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Sheriff’s Deputy Suspected In Murder Of Sylmar Man

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) —A Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy was arrested Wednesday for allegedly fatally shooting a Sylmar man in June.

Francisco Gamez, 41, was charged wtih murder and other counts Thursday in connection to the death of 38-year-old Armando Casillas.

Around 11 a.m. on June 17, patrol officers were flagged down by residents in Sylmar and directed to Casillas, who was suffering from a gunshot wound.

The victim was taken to the hospital where he later died.

The suspect also shot at someone else, but that person wasn’t injured.

Homicide detectives began to investigate the incident and developed leads that connected a deputy to the crime.

KCAL9′s Juan Fernandez said it was revealed that Casillas and another man were involved in an argument when the man called his father, Gamez, to the scene.

According to allegations, Gamez got into his car and confronted a group of people.

He rolled down his window and said something to the effect of, “Where you from?”

Gamez then fired two shots and reported to work.

“There was some disagreement and this guy called his dad and they came and retaliated. They came and shot my brother,” said Casillas’ brother, Joseph.

Gamez, a 17-year veteran of the sheriff’s department who was assigned to the county’s West Hollywood Station since 2005, was placed on leave with pay in July.

Sheriff Lee Baca released a statement about Gamez’s arrest saying, “the off-duty acts that led to the arrest of Francisco Gamez are deeply disturbing to me and to the entire Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The sheriff’s department has been fully cooperating with the Los Angeles Police Department since first learning of the investigation.”

Gamez is jailed on $4 million bail.

A motive for the murder has not officially been released.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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