Homicide

LA sheriff's sergeant killed answering burglary call

The man arrested for fatally shooting a Los Angeles County sheriff's sergeant was identified Thursday as a convicted robber on parole.

Trenton Trevon Lovell, 27, of Lancaster remained jailed without bail following his arrest Wednesday on suspicion of murder.

Lovell is believed to have gunned down Sgt. Steven Owen, 53, as the sergeant answered a report of a burglary in progress at an apartment building in Lancaster, a desert town north of Los Angeles.

Owen, a decorated 29-year Sheriff's Department veteran, was shot in the face and died two hours later at a hospital.

Lovell was later arrested after allegedly trying to run away, commandeering Owen's patrol car, throwing it into reverse and ramming another police vehicle, then running into a house where two teenagers cowered.

The teens managed to text sheriff's deputies and a SWAT team came into the building to rescue them, leading Lovell to flee out the back where he was arrested, authorities have said.

He was shot in the upper body sometime during the incident.

Lovell had been staying with his sister in the apartment complex where the burglary was reported and neighbors said he had a hot temper, the Los Angeles Times reported (http://lat.ms/2cVCvaJ ).

Blanca Oseguera, 38, said she confronted him three weeks ago after he cursed at her daughters while smoking marijuana outside.

On Thursday at the apartment where Lovell had been staying, a woman who identified herself as his mother told the Times that the shooting had devastated her family and she was praying for the sergeant's family.

"He's still my son, and I love him regardless," she said.

The Times said court documents indicated that Lovell was on parole following a 2009 conviction and six-year prison sentence for robbing a USC community safety officer at gunpoint.

Lovell also pleaded no contest in 2008 to resisting arrest and received a 90-day jail sentence, and in September 2015 he pleaded no contest to driving under the influence of alcohol and causing injury to another person, which resulted in his being ordered to take drug and alcohol counseling, the Times reported.

In 2014, Owen was one of several deputies from the Lancaster station who received Sheriff's Department medals for meritorious conduct after they captured a gunman in a bulletproof vest who had taken a driver hostage and used him as a human shield after a police chase.

Gov. Jerry Brown issued a statement after the shooting praising Owen's "honor and courage" and saying flags at the Capitol will be flown at half-staff.