Man Charged With Attempting to Murder Two Los Angeles Sheriff’s Deputies

A man was charged on Wednesday with shooting two Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies who were sitting in their patrol car, an attack that was captured on video and that prompted widespread condemnation, including from both presidential candidates.

The man, Deonte Lee Murray, 36, of Compton, Calif., was charged with two counts of willful, deliberate and premeditated attempted murder of a peace officer and possession of a firearm by a felon, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Mr. Murray was arraigned on Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, where he pleaded not guilty and was ordered held with bail set at $6 million, according to his lawyer, Jack Keenan. If convicted, Mr. Murray could face life in prison.

Mr. Keenan said Mr. Murray was being harassed and threatened in jail by deputy sheriffs who were denying him food and waking him up at all hours. He said Mr. Murray was also being held in a unit for suicidal inmates and forced to wear a padded blanket known as a “suicide gown,” even though he is not suicidal.

Mr. Keenan said he had made a motion in court to have Mr. Murray relocated, but the motion was denied. “That’s my biggest concern with Mr. Murray,” he said, “his safety in jail.”

Mr. Keenan said he could not comment on the charges, because he had not seen the evidence against his client.

A spokesman for the Sheriff’s Department did not immediately have a response to Mr. Keenan’s complaint.

The authorities said that at about 7 p.m. on Sept. 12, Mr. Murray walked up to the deputies’ car outside the M.L.K. Transit Center, a metro station in Compton, and opened fire, striking the deputies multiple times. He then ran from the scene and drove off in a Mercedes that he had stolen in a carjacking on Sept. 1, the authorities said. Mr. Murray has also been charged in connection with that carjacking, the authorities said.

The deputies, a man, 24, and a woman, 31, who is the mother of a 6-year-old boy, were taken to a hospital in critical condition and underwent surgery, department officials said. The female deputy was able to call for help on a police radio despite having been shot, according to Alex Villanueva, the Los Angeles County sheriff.

Both deputies were recovering at home on Wednesday and face additional reconstructive surgeries, Sheriff Villanueva said.

The authorities said Mr. Murray appeared to have acted alone. Asked about a motive, Captain Kent A. Wegener of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, said: “Other than the fact that he obviously hates policemen and wants them dead — not specifically.”

Jackie Lacey, the Los Angeles County district attorney, said the deputies “became victims of a violent crime for one reason: They were doing their job and they were wearing a badge.”

Sheriff Villanueva said that after the attack, bystanders were “celebrating and cheering” that the deputies had been shot.

“These acts, and then that day, I will not forget it,” Sheriff Villanueva said at a news conference on Wednesday. “It represents the worst of humanity and it shocked the whole nation.”

The day after the shooting, President Trump, who has campaigned on a call for “law and order” and who frequently depicts American cities as bastions of violence and hostility toward the police, responded on Twitter to a video of the shooting. “Animals that must be hit hard!” he wrote.

Mr. Trump, commenting on the deputies, also wrote: “If they die, fast trial death penalty for the killer. Only way to stop this!”

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic presidential nominee, also denounced the shooting.

“Acts of lawlessness and violence directed against police officers are unacceptable, outrageous, and entirely counterproductive to the pursuit of greater peace and justice in America — as are the actions of those who cheer such attacks on,” he said in a statement on Sept. 13.

Video of the shooting showed a gunman approaching the passenger side of the car from behind, firing several rounds and then running away. Additional surveillance video showed one deputy exiting the passenger side of the patrol car, hand on head, according to The Los Angeles Times.

Deputy Juanita Navarro, a spokeswoman for Sheriff’s Department, said the deputies had been shot multiple times in the upper torso, which she said could include the head and face. She declined to elaborate.

Mr. Murray was arrested on Sept. 15, three days after the shooting, prosecutors said. He faces one additional count each of attempted murder and possession of a firearm by a felon in connection with the carjacking, during which he shot a man in the leg and stole his Mercedes sedan, prosecutors said.

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