San Diego – A Border Patrol agent fatally shot a 32-year-old mother of five Friday in suburban San Diego as he rode on the hood of her car after she ran into him, authorities said, but the victim's family isn't so convinced.
The agent fired after being driven several hundred yards on the hood, Chula Vista police Capt. Gary Wedge told The Associated Press. The woman was later identified in a police statement as Valeria Alvarado.
The shooting occurred about five miles north of the Mexican border as plainclothes agents were looking to serve a felony warrant in the area to someone other than Alvarado, Border Patrol Deputy Chief Rodney Scott told U-T San Diego.
Where's the evidence my wife threatened a trained officer? I want justice.
Scott said the agent was stuck atop the car as Alvarado drove.
"Fearing for his life, he discharged his weapon to get the vehicle to stop," Scott said. No other agents fired. The car Valeria Alvarado was driving Friday when she was killed.
Family members said Valeria Alvarado grew up in Chula Vista where the shooting took place but had been living about five miles away in the Southcrest neighborhood of San Diego, and they did not know why she was in her former hometown.
Alvarado was declared dead at the scene, and the agent was taken to a hospital. His injuries were not clear.
After talking to investigators, family members including her husband and cousin told U-T San Diego that Alvarado was a housewife and mother of five children ranging from ages 3 to 17 who went by the name Monique.
"I love her to the fullest. That's my heart," husband Gilbert Alvarado said. "Where's the evidence my wife threatened a trained officer? I want justice."
Alvarado's husband, Gilbert Alvarado, was furious after the killing of his wife, according to reports.
Hector Salazar, one of several neighbors who witnessed the incident, said he saw a man in civilian clothes on the hood of a black car aiming a gun at the windshield.
Salazar told U-T San Diego the man started pulling the trigger, and he heard about five shots. Moments later, other plainclothes agents approached the car, he said.
Others like Ayanna Evans, 19, and Prince Watson, who both live in a nearby apartment building, said they never saw the agent on the car.
Evans happened to look out the window and saw the Honda backing up slowly, and a man in a red shirt walking toward the car.
"Then I heard, `Pop, pop, pop,'" she told the U-T.
Watson also backed up Evans
"She wasn't speeding or driving erratic at all. I heard the agent say, 'Stop.' He was in the street and started shooting and walking toward the car," Watson told the U-T. Border.
Christian Ramirez of the Southern Border Community Coalition to the U-T the shooting was ``troubling," in part because Alvarado was not wanted by law enforcement authorities and was a U.S. citizen.
The person named in the warrant the agents were serving was not apprehended, Scott said.
The FBI and Chula Vista police are investigating.
Based on reporting by the Associated Press.