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Deputy who allegedly fired revolver in response to prank is arrested

Posted: May 19, 2014 11:25 a.m.
Updated: May 19, 2014 11:25 a.m.

A sheriff’s deputy who allegedly fired his service revolver into the air after neighborhood kids pulled a prank has been arrested on suspicion of discharging a firearm with gross negligence, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Deputy Sung Jin Pak, 47, of Westridge, was arrested Friday night on the misdemeanor weapons charge in connection with an alleged “ding dong ditch” incident on Greenleaf Court that occurred in October.

Pak has been suspended with pay for the past six months while sheriff’s detectives with the Internal Criminal Investigations Branch look into the matter, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Nicole Nishida said last month.

“The arrest stems from an incident that happened on Oct. 12,” Nishida said Monday.

Pak is scheduled to appear in Newhall Municipal Court July 16, said District Attorney spokeswoman Shiara Dávila-Morales.

In the criminal complain submitted to prosecutors, LASD Sgt. Kelly Matthews of the Internal Criminal Investigations Branch explained the single criminal count filed against Pak.

“On or about Oct. 12, 2013, in the County of Los Angeles, the crime of discharge of firearm with gross negligence in violation of Penal code Section 2465.3(a), a misdemeanor, was committed by Sung Jin Pak, who did willfully and unlawfully discharge a firearm in a grossly negligent manner which could result in injury and death to a person,” according to a copy of the complaint obtained by The Signal.

The alleged confrontation between Pak and pranksters happened about 8 p.m. Oct. 12.

“Apparently, juveniles were playing a prank called ding-dong-ditch, where they ring the doorbell and run away,” then-LASD spokesman Steve Whitmore said, noting there were reportedly 15 to 20 kids involved.

When they pulled their prank on Pak’s home, he “ran after the juveniles trying to identify them,” Whitmore said. “Apparently, three of the kids were physically larger than the others and turned toward Pak in a threatening manner,

“The deputy identified himself as a sheriff’s deputy and fired a warning shot in the air,” Whitmore said.


on Twitter @jamesarthurholt


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