Teenager Shot by School Safety Officer is Braindead, Says Family

An 18-year-old woman who was shot in the head by a school safety officer in Long Beach, Calif., is braindead and not expected to survive, according to her relatives. Mona Rodriguez, the mother of a 5-month-old boy, was in the front passenger seat of a car when she was shot by a school safety officer near Millikan High School on Monday, Sept. 27.

According to local news, the officer responded to a situation in an off-campus parking lot after witnessing an altercation in the street that involved Rodriguez and others. Police say that the unidentified Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) officer was driving through the area and observed Rodriguez involved in an altercation with a 15-year-old girl. Investigators have since determined that a 20-year-old man and a 16-year-old boy were also involved in the dispute to an undetermined extent.

Local news reports that Rodriguez, the man and the boy attempted to leave the scene in an Infiniti sedan, Rodriguez in the front passenger seat. The officer approached the car and fired into the interior as the driver pulled away, striking Rodriguez.

“The school safety officer approached a group of individuals to investigate an altercation, and during the course of that investigation, the school safety officer discharged their duty weapon and an individual was struck by gunfire,” a Long Beach Unified School District statement read. Police say she was struck in the upper body, while her family says she was struck in the head.

Long Beach police and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office are investigating the incident. The officer who fired the shots has been placed on leave.

Rodriguez’s relatives said on Wednesday, Sept. 29, that Rodriguez has been declared braindead and that the hospital plans to disconnect her from life support.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning and Campus Security and Life Safety. He can be reached at MJones@1105media.com