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NORTH SACRAMENTO — A Sacramento police officer died Wednesday after she was shot in North Sacramento and the standoff between the gunman and police was still ongoing early Thursday morning. The suspect eventually surrendered around 1:54 a.m. Thursday and was taken into police custody. According to Deputy Chief of Police Dave Peletta with the Sacramento Police Department, Officer Tara O’Sullivan has died. She was 26 years old. As of 11 p.m., the shooter was still firing a weapon from a Redwood Avenue home. Several pops of gunfire could be heard in the area between 9 and 10 p.m. and then again just after 10:30 p.m. Multiple law enforcement agencies and negotiators at the scene were not able to contact the gunman. Sacramento Police Sgt. Vance Chandler reports just before noon, there was a disturbance between a male and a female at a home on Redwood Avenue near Edgewater Road. Shortly after 3:30 p.m., police met with the woman at a separate location and she was later accompanied by officers to the North Sacramento residence so she could retrieve some belongings. While officers were with her at the Redwood Avenue home, a suspect armed with a rifle fired at them and Officer O’Sullivan was hit by the gunfire around 6:10 p.m. It is unknown how many other officers were in the area at the time, but Chandler says they shielded themselves from the continuing gunfire until an armored vehicle arrived in the neighborhood. A lieutenant reports the female officer was “pinned” in the backyard of another home. The ongoing threat kept other officers on scene from getting to their injured colleague for around 40 minutes until an armored truck could get in close enough to rescue her. Just before 7 p.m., Chandler reports Officer O’Sullivan was taken to UC Davis Medical Center in serious condition. Her death was publicly announced by the police department at a press conference just after 12:30 a.m. “She’s tough, she’s strong. There was no one more fit or ready than Tara O’Sullivan to represent the city of Sacramento and our fine police department tonight,” said Councilwoman Angelique Ashby. She was in phase training at the time of the shooting. A Sacramento police patrol vehicle that was taped off at the medical center has been towed away.   The public has been told to avoid the area surrounding the scene. Those who were evacuated and cannot return to their homes can go to Noralto Elementary School on 477 Las Palmas Ave.
“We got stranded about a half-hour ago. We been out here, so we can’t move,” said Sacramento resident Nate Cason. “My father-in-law lives over here. We’re worried about him.” Cason’s father-in-law was OK and out of the line of fire but the unpredictability of the gunman kept everyone on edge for hours. Police pulled out all of their defenses and moved media and bystanders back from where bullets were flying. With tensions raised over the chaos in their neighborhood, some of those bystanders started fighting each other, forcing officers to make an arrest while still trying to bring in the shooter, who brought out the full force of the department. FOX40 crews are at the scene. This is a developing story.