LANCASTER (CBSLA) — Days after admitting he faked a story about being shot at, residents of the building accused of firing on former deputy Angel Reinosa are still angry about the way they were treated and portrayed.
CBS2/KCAL9’s Tom Wait spoke to some of the residents Wednesday and many are still reeling at the news.
Reinosa was officially fired but for some of the residents, that’s a little too little.
“The cops said, get into the house! Get into the house,” said Josephine Korea.
She described the terrifying moments LA County Sheriff’s deputies swarmed her apartment building — next door to the Lancaster Sheriff’s station. Guns drawn they did a floor-by-floor, apartment-by-apartment search that took hours.
It happened a week ago moments after the 21-year-old deputy said he came under fire from a sniper in the apartment complex.
The “shooting” was all a lie.
“It is scary and we don’t deserve something like that,” says Korea.
“As of last night deputy Angel Reinosa is no longer employed boy the LA County Sheriff’s department,” said LA County Chief Alex Villanueva at a press conference.
But the big question remains — why?
“I cannot speculate on why he did what he did,” Villanueva says.
The apartment complex in question houses low-income and some mentally ill residents. In the hours after the bogus shooting, Lancaster’s mayor said this.
“It’s a building filled with people who were being treated for mental illness. Of course, it’s a concern. Of course it’s insanity,” R. Rex Parris said.
The mayor says he’s received death threats since that statement — and he now acknowledges the complex is not just for residents with mental health issues. He does maintain the building remains a safety concern for deputies.
“It’s a false reporting of a crime,” says Villanueva, “And we also have the issue of the civil – the recovery of costs because this was an enormous expenditure of taxpayer monies.”
Villanueva did not put an exact dollar figure on the investigation, manhunt and deputy overtime, but said it was in the 100’s of thousands of dollars.