Name of deputy who fatally shot hit-and-run suspect released

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Authorities investigate deadly shooting in Oceanside on Dec. 20, 2017.

OCEANSIDE, Calif. — Authorities Thursday released the name of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department deputy who fatally shot a hit-and-run suspect last week at the end of a North County pursuit.

Deputy Kai Bowman, a five-year member of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, opened fire on Javier Gomez, 41, when the suspect allegedly pulled a gun on him in a neighborhood north of state Route 78 and east of College Boulevard in Oceanside on the afternoon of Dec. 20.

The events that led to the deadly confrontation began when Gomez failed to yield for a traffic stop in neighboring Vista, Oceanside police Sgt. Gabe Jimenez said.

The resulting road chase ended shortly after 3 p.m. in the 3100 block of Camarillo Avenue, where Gomez abandoned his car and ran off, Jimenez said.

Moments later, the suspect allegedly pulled a pistol, prompting Bowman to shoot him. Gomez collapsed in the front yard of a home and died.

A woman who had been riding in the suspect’s car during the pursuit was detained for questioning and then released, Jimenez said.

Bowman was equipped with an activated body camera at the time, according to Jimenez. Images from the device have not been made public.

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