2 Fresno Correctional Officers Shot in Head, Neck; Suspected Shooter Charged With Attempted Murder
Two Fresno County Sheriff’s correctional officers were shot on Saturday after an altercation with a man in the lobby of the Fresno County Jail.
Juanita Davila, an 18-year-veteran of the force, was shot in the head and neck. Toamalama Scanlan, who has 10 years of law enforcement experience, was also shot in the head and neck area.
Around 8:30 a.m. 37-year-old Thong Vang entered the main lobby of the Fresno County Jail and allegedly tried to cut the visitation line.
Vang began acting erratically and pacing back and forth near the metal detectors after correctional officers told him to wait his turn, according to a Fresno County Sheriff’s Department press release.
Davila and Scanlan approached Vang and asked him to take a seat. He refused and an altercation ensued between the officers and Vang, deputies said.
During the struggle Vang allegedly pulled a handgun out of his clothing and shot both Davila and Scanlan. An officer at the front desk radioed for help and a lieutenant responded to the call, firing shots at Vang.
Vang returned fire, but no one else was injured during the shootout, according to authorities. Officers used a Taser to apprehend Vang, but the weapon was ineffective.
The shooter then ran into the jail records area where he eventually dropped his weapon and surrendered. Deputies took Vang into custody and he was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries.
Both officers were transported to the hospital after the shooting. Davila is in critical, but stable, condition and Scanlan is in critical condition.
Vang was booked Saturday night and faces felony charges of attempted murder, being a felon in possession of a gun and bringing drugs into a jail.
Vang is known gang member, sex registrant and parolee, according to the Sheriff’s Department. He was previously sentenced in 1998 to 19 years in prison on numerous rape charges involving teens aged 14 and under. Vang served 16 years and was released in Sept. 2014.
The Fresno Deputy Sheriff’s Association is accepting donations on behalf of the injured officers and the Fresno County Jail is closed to visitors until further notice.