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San Diego Police arrest man on suspicion of opening fire during protest outside Mayor Todd Gloria's home

San Diego police sdpd cruiser
Posted at 9:05 AM, Aug 31, 2021

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- A man was arrested on suspicion of opening fire as a group of people protested outside of the Mission Hills home of San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria.

San Diego Police said a group of people gathered outside of the mayor’s house at around 8:20 p.m. Monday when witnesses said a truck drove through the crowd in a possible attempt to strike protesters.

“He swerves, and basically tried to play chicken with us, and try to hit us,” Dan, a witness said.

Local activist Tasha Williamson, who was at the protest, told ABC 10News the group gathered outside of Gloria's home to protest the city's policies on the homeless population.

No one was hit by the vehicle, witnesses said.

Witnesses told police the driver parked the truck and then entered a nearby apartment building. The driver, according to witnesses, then came out a short time later and fired at least one shot into the air, but no one was hit by gunfire.

“This man is shouting ‘I’m going to shoot you in your face,’ repeatedly with a gun in his hand. And people couldn’t even get up to their cars because their car is past where he is," Williamson said.

Responding SDPD officers arrived and contacted the suspected shooter. Witnesses were able to positively identify the man as the person who allegedly opened fire.

Police said Lonnie Crawford was taken into custody on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, illegal discharge of a firearm, and making a deadly threat.

Mayor Gloria's office sent ABC 10News a statement:

“All San Diegans have a constitutional right to peacefully assemble and protest without fear of being attacked or intimidated.

Last night’s protest at the apartment building where my family and I live turned violent when a man not associated with the protest senselessly fired a gun.

I am grateful for our police department’s quick work that apprehended the suspect who is now in custody and facing multiple felony charges.”
Todd Gloria, San Diego Mayor

Crawford is expected to be arraigned in a San Diego courtroom on January 13, 2022.