VALENCIA (CBSLA) – Firefighters rush into danger to save lives, but a deadly shooting at a Los Angeles County Department station in Agua Dulce left one firefighter dead and one critically injured Tuesday morning.
The violence shook Fire Chief Daryl Osby to his core. He emotionally made a statement during a 3 p.m. news conference.READ MORE: GoFundMe Set Up For Tomas Mejia, Security Guard Fatally Stabbed At Park La Brea Apartments
“It is with a heavy heart that I stand here and say that one of our firefighter specialists succumbed to his injuries,” he said, adding the shooting, “was some of the worst news that I’ve heard in my career.”
It is with heavy hearts that the LACoFD confirms that a tragic shooting occurred at approximately 10:55 a.m. today at FS 81 in Agua Dulce. The Dept. is still in the process of gathering additional information & are cooperating with law enf. throughout this ongoing incident. (1/2)
— L.A. County Fire Department (@LACoFDPIO) June 1, 2021
Osby confirmed that a 44-year-old male who had worked with the department for over 20 years was killed in the shooting. He said a 54-year-old fire captain sustained a gunshot wound and was in critical but stable condition after being airlifted to Henry Mayo Hospital in Valencia.READ MORE: United Teachers LA Vote In Favor Of Agreement With LAUSD For Physical Return To 2021-2022 School Year
The fire captain had undergone surgery by Tuesday evening. His name has not yet been released.
The gunman is believed to be a coworker whose body was found in a burning house nearby.
The firehouse shooting is yet another instance of tragic workplace violence on the heels of the San Jose shooting that left nine people dead, and the gunman.
Mental health experts said the pandemic has impacted people emotionally and could be leading to an uptick in violence in the workplace.
“When people socially isolate, like, during the pandemic, they don’t have support systems,” said Dr. Adolph Brown, a clinical psychologist. “People have to change without necessarily being prepared for change and change is already hard.”
He said the biggest issue he sees as we come out of the pandemic is that people are hypervigilant and very on edge.MORE NEWS: Suspected Car Thief In Custody After Pursuit Ends In North Hollywood
Brown said a tip to deal with the anxiety that might have come with the pandemic is to take a step back from your emotions and try not to let them override your critical thinking.