A Seal Beach Police officer fired at a man who according to police intentionally struck the officer with his car. Another officer was injured when the suspect’s car struck his vehicle. The suspect was not hit by the gunfire and both the involved officers and suspect were transported to local hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries.
The officers injured during this incident are recovering and are seeking follow up medical care.
The suspect sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to a local hospital for an evaluation. Two children were involved in the incident. The children are safe. They were also provided with medical care and have been released to family members.
As the suspect in this incident was not hit by the gunfire, it is the policy of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office not to respond to investigate. The SBPD will conduct the investigation into this use of force per our policy.
The last officer involved shooting in Seal Beach occurred in March of 2017.
In December 2012, a Garden Grove officer used deadly force at the conclusion of a pursuit that ended in Seal Beach. In October 2013, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office concluded that the officer was justified in fatally shooting the suspect.
On Saturday, June 6, 2020 at approximately 6:36 p.m., the Seal Beach Police Department received a call of a four-car traffic collision in the area of Seal Beach Boulevard and Pacific Coast Highway. Seal Beach officers responded and began conducting the traffic collision investigation. While the officers were investigating the initial traffic collision, another call was received of a possible drunk driver which was driving northbound on Pacific Coast Highway near Seal Beach Boulevard.
A Seal Beach police officer was on foot investigating the initial collision when he was intentionally struck by the reported drunk driver’s vehicle. The officer then fired his duty weapon at the driver through the front windshield; however, the driver was not struck by the gunfire.
The suspect fled northbound on Pacific Coast Highway at a high rate of speed where his vehicle collided with the driver side of another Seal Beach police officer while he was driving his police car. The suspect vehicle then careened into another, uninvolved car head-on where it came to rest.
The suspect then fled the vehicle and led officers on a short foot pursuit with a small child in hand (later determined to be the suspect’s 4-year-old daughter). Officers located the suspect and were able to remove the child from his grip before being tased by a police officer’s issued Taser. The suspect was taken into custody shortly thereafter. Officers also later discovered that when the suspect fled on foot, he abandoned his 12 -year-old younger brother in the car.
The suspect, later identified as Oscar Eduardo Mercado, 23, of Long Beach, was transported to a local hospital for evaluation. The Seal Beach officer who was struck by the suspect’s vehicle was transported to the hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. Additionally, the police officer who was driving the police car which was struck by the suspect’s vehicle was also transported to a hospital for an evaluation.
The suspect was later transported to the Orange County Jail where he was booked on several charges including suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer, felony hit and run, felony child endangerment for both children, and resisting or delaying a peace officer with violence.
“Once the officers discovered there were children involved in this incident, they immediately put the safety and well-being of the children first,” said Chief of Police Philip L. Gonshak. “The officers’ efforts should be commended as all of the children involved are safe at home with their family.”
This is an ongoing investigation. Police are asking anyone with information to call Detective Jeff Gibson at 562-799-4100 ext. 1109.