Man shot by Fremont officer identified

FREMONT (BCN) — Police in Fremont have identified the man injured Monday in an officer-involved shooting.

Police said Rolonte Simril, 27, was armed with a metal pipe when an officer with the Fremont Police Department shot him.

Simril was transported to the hospital and on Wednesday was arrested on suspicion of brandishing a weapon and obstructing/resisting arrest, police said.

Simril was released from custody due to being hospitalized.

On Friday, police said he was recovering in the hospital.

On Monday at 3:55 p.m., patrol officer William Gourley was in the parking lot of a grocery store in the 5000 block of Mowry Avenue when he was informed of a man brandishing and waving a metal pipe at people and threatening he was going to hurt someone, police said.

The officer radioed for cover and located the suspect, later identified as Simril.

Gourley got out of his vehicle with his weapon drawn and ordered Simril to “drop it,” but Simril took off running through the crowded parking lot while still armed with the pipe, police said.

Gourley holstered his gun, took out his Taser yelled “stop, police, drop it,” several times, police said.

Gourley decided the Taser would not be effective because the suspect was wearing a large backpack and overcoat, so the officer holstered his Taser and drew his firearm, police said.

The officer then holstered his firearm again and chased Simril for 200 to 250 yards, police said.

A driver in the parking lot then tried to assist the officer by driving into Simril’s path.

Simril fell onto the hood of the vehicle, spun around and landed directly facing Gourley in a fighting stance.

Gourley yelled for the driver to move the vehicle and get out of the way.

He then pointed his gun at Simril and gave him several orders to drop the pipe, police said.

Gourley said Simril made a movement toward him while holding the pipe, and feeling he was in imminent danger, Gourley fired his weapon three times, striking Simril.

Responding officers took the weapon from Simril, placed him in handcuffs and began rendering field trauma care, police said.

Paramedics arrived at the scene and transported Simril to a trauma center.

Police said Simril was in possession of a glass pipe commonly used for smoking illegal drugs.

The weapon recovered from the scene was a metal pole that measured 16.5 inches long.

Police said surveillance footage showing Simril swinging an object at people was recovered from a business, and Gourley’s patrol car was equipped with a video camera that captured a portion of the pursuit.

There were also several witnesses to the incident and to Simril’s behavior prior to the altercation with the officer, according to police.

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