HAYWARD, Calif. — A police officer in Hayward, Calif., was fatally shot early Wednesday during a traffic stop.
Sgt. Scott Lunger, a 15-year veteran of the Bay Area department, pulled over a vehicle he saw driving erratically shortly after 3 a.m. local time.
“As Sgt. Lunger got out of the car and approached the driver side of the vehicle, the driver shot Sgt. Lunger without warning,” Capt. Mark Koller told reporters.
He said another officer was on scene and returned fire. The driver fled. The vehicle was later abandoned in Oakland, where it was recovered.
Based on information from that vehicle, authorities have identified a “person of interest,” Koller said, stopping short of calling that person a suspect.
“That person is secure, does not pose a threat to the community. He is not in custody at this time, but we have no other person that we are looking for,” Koller said.
He described Lunger as a close friend, well-respected, accomplished and an “ideal police officer.”
“This is a very devastating and dark day for the community of Hayward,” Koller said.