A 35-year-old Modesto man is in critical condition at a local hospital after being shot by a patrol officer responding to a family dispute.
The shooting happened on Milo Road near East Morris Avenue after a frantic woman called 911 around midnight. Dispatchers lost the call and no one answered several call back attempts.
Police say it was the same woman who was screaming inside a bungalow behind a house on the street when officers arrived.
Lt. Brian Findlen says police confronted the man who they believed to be involved in the incident. They say one shot was fired by an officer, wounding the man.
Those familiar with the participants say a woman and her brother who lived in the residence got into a disagreement which led to the shooting. They say five children lived in the residence, three belonging to the woman and two to the man.
A man whose daughter was in the house during the incident brought her back to check on the woman.
"It's not something I'm happy about," a man who only identified himself as Art said.
He said the situation was "scary,'' although his daughter was not injured. Police say the woman and the kids were also unharmed.
Police say officers responding to a family or domestic dispute is a challenge for responding officers who often don't know the dynamics of the dispute or the characters involved. And shooting incidents are the toughest calls officers have to make.
"He has to make that decision in a split second to protect his or her life, somebody else that’s nearby," Lt. Findlen said.
The wounded man has yet to be arrested because he's being treated for a severe injury, but Findlen said there are three investigations now underway. One is for the incident itself, a police internal investigation on the police shooting, and a district attorney review of the shooting incident.
The officer who fired his gun is on paid administrative leave, the standard practice while a officer involved shooting is underway.