East Los Angeles deputies shot and killed 21-year-old Anthony Vargas Sunday morning at approximately 2 a.m. after allegedly committing an armed robbery, running from deputies and brandishing a handgun during a fight with them.
The incident occurred near the intersection of Mednik Avenue and Floral Drive in unincorporated East Los Angeles, a Department statement said. This area has been the site of numerous prior shootings, including deputy-involved shootings. It is also down the street from where Deputy Mohamed Ahmed was shot in the face in 2011 while contacting another armed man.
It appears what happened is deputies had responded to the area regarding an armed robbery call. Another assisting unit on the way to the call saw Vargas, who matched the suspect description. A short pursuit ensued, followed by a struggle. During the struggle, Vargas reportedly tried to “arm himself”, according to Homicide Lt. Derrick Alfred.
A handgun was recovered at the scene and one deputy suffered minor injuries during the fight.
According to radio traffic (click here and skip to 5:40 in), the initial armed robbery incident occurred at Hammel Street and Mednik Avenue. The deputy-involved shooting occurred about two blocks away. We were unable to locate radio traffic of the shooting itself, but traffic of a deputy-involved fight in East LA could be heard around 12:10 into the recording above.