A California teen is in critical condition after a school resource officer allegedly shot her in the head.
According to Long Beach police, 18-year-old Mona Rodriguez was involved in a fight Monday near Millikan High School, off of Spring Street and Palo Verde Avenue in Long Beach. She reportedly got into a physical altercation with a 15-year-old girl and fled the scene afterward in a vehicle.
Police said a 20-year-old male and a 16-year-old teen were also inside the vehicle. Rodriquez was riding in the passenger seat.
KTLA 5 reports that a school resource officer opened fire at Rodriquez’s sedan as the car peeled off. A bullet hit Rodriquez in the back of her head and according to her family, she is now brain dead.
“She’s on life support, but Mona is gone,” Rodriquez’s 5-month-old son’s father, Rafeul Chowdhury, said. “I just got to step up now and play the mother and the father role, and keep my son strong.”
Chowdhury told the outlet that the school resource officer initially tried to break up the fight by threatening to spray Rodriquez and the 15-year-old. He said the officer then opened fire without warning as they left the scene.
“All we did is just got in the car and left. He never told us to stop anytime soon, and the way he shot us, it wasn’t right.”
The officer is now on administrative leave as police investigate the incident, but for Rodriquez’s family, it’s not enough.
“The only way we stop these safety officers from shooting unarmed people and killing them is by having them prosecuted and held accountable for what they’ve done wrong to members of the community,” civil rights activist Najee Ali, who was with the family during a press conference this week, said.
The alleged shooter is an employee with the Long Beach Unified School District. The district responded to the incident, claiming that all of its officers are “highly trained and held accountable to the established standards in their profession.”
Meanwhile, a GoFundMe page has been set up by Rodriguez’s family to help raise money for funeral expenses.
“Mona is leaving behind her mom, 4 brothers, and her sister but most importantly she’s leaving behind her 5 month old baby boy Isael,” the page reads. “If you are reading this please help me help her family during this time of need.”
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[Featured Photo: GoFundMe]