HAWTHORNE POLICE DEPARTMENT
July 1, 2013
On June 30, 2013, at approximately 5:44pm, Officers from the Hawthorne Police Department responded to a residence in the area of 137th Street & Jefferson Avenue, City of Hawthorne, in regard to an armed robbery - gun used – which occurred to two individuals inside of a home. Upon arrival, Officers engaged several subjects involved in the robbery, who quickly barricaded themselves in the home and refused orders to come out. Officers used several resources, including the Department’s armored tactical vehicle and a loud-speaker system, in an attempt to communicate and bring the incident to safe resolution. After an approximate one hour and forty-five minute standoff, the individuals surrendered from the home and the suspect responsible for the robbery was identified and arrested.
During this evolving critical incident and the extraction of suspects from the home, Officers containing the location were interfered with by an individual. This interference included loud, distracting music (from the individual’s vehicle), and his intentional walking within close-proximity to armed officers, while holding an 80-pound Rottweiler on a long leash-line. These acts, in totality, created an increasingly dangerous situation and demanded Officers’ focus away from the matter at hand. By comparison, numerous citizens were filming similarly as the suspect, but from a safe distance and compliant to Officers’ regards.
Once all parties to the original robbery incident were apprehended, two officers approached this suspect to address the violation(s) of law. Just prior to approach, the suspect placed his dog back into his car, but did not close the windows. As the suspect was being taken into custody, his Rottweiler became agitated and jumped out of the car, approaching the officers who were making the arrest. An assisting officer came to aid and attempted to control the Rottweiler, first by gaining control of the leash. However, the dog lunged and made aggressive movements toward the officer(s). Fearing that the attacking Rottweiler would imminently bite the officer(s), one officer
fired his duty weapon several times, striking and killing the dog. The suspect, later identified as Leon Rosby, was arrested and booked at the Hawthorne Police Department Jail for ‘Interference with Officer(s)’.
The Hawthorne Police Department is conducting a comprehensive investigation into the actions of each party, our Officers, and to ensure appropriate adherence to our Department policies and procedures. Additionally, the Department is truly sensitive to the invariable loss of the dog in this incident.
The Hawthorne Police Department asks that if any personal video taken by citizens present at this incident is willing to be shared in our Investigation, please contact us.
Contact: Lieutenant Scott Swain
Detective Bureau Commander / Public Information Officer