LOS ANGELES – A now-former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy who falsely claimed he was shot outside the Lancaster sheriff’s station, prompting an hours-long dragnet in search of a non-existent shooter, was arrested Thursday.
Angel Raul Reinosa, who was a rookie deputy when he reported being shot on Aug. 21, 2019, was arrested around 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16, during a traffic stop in Sylmar, according to the sheriff’s department.
Reinosa was charged by the District Attorney’s Office with two felony counts of insurance fraud and one misdemeanor count of filing a false police report.
Sheriff’s officials said he was being held in lieu of $40,000 bail. He could be arraigned as early as Friday, Jan. 17, prosecutors said.
He faces up to 5 1/2 years in jail if convicted as charged, according to the District Attorney’s Office.
Reinosa reported that he was shot in a shoulder while standing in the parking lot of the Lancaster sheriff’s station in the 500 block of West Lancaster Boulevard at about 2:50 p.m. Aug. 21, sheriff’s officials said. The reported ambush led to a massive containment perimeter being established, and an exhaustive, hours-long search of a four-story apartment complex from which Reinosa claimed the shot had been fired.
A nearby school was also placed on lockdown as dozens of SWAT deputies descended on the scene via helicopter and armored vehicles. The search of the building and surrounding area continued until roughly 5:30 a.m. the following day.
On Aug. 24, Sheriff Alex Villanueva announced that the shooting report turned out to be a hoax, and Reinosa was no longer a member of the department. Sheriff’s officials told reporters that several things did not add up in Reinosa’s story: No bullets were recovered in the parking lot, no cars were struck by gunfire and many people in the vicinity did not hear any gunshots.
“As sheriff, I am responsible for my deputies and am embarrassed and incredibly disappointed at what this deputy did,” Villanueva said at the time. “I apologize to our community and our elected officials who rallied in our support. During the investigation, we had suspicions concerning the validity of the claimed assault, but had to exercise care before accusing an employee of making false statements.”
UPDATE: Sheriff’s officials said Angel Reinosa, who was initially held on $40,000 bail, was released on bond at 12:31 a.m. Friday, Jan. 17. His next court appearance was tentatively set for Feb. 7, according to the sheriff’s Inmate Information Center website.
Previous related stories:
Sheriff: Deputy who claimed he was shot “no longer employed” by department
Lancaster deputy “fabricated” claim that he was shot
Deputies recover pellet rifle during search for Lancaster shooting suspect
Deputy wounded in ambush outside Lancaster Sheriff’s Station
15 comments for "Ex-deputy arrested for Lancaster sniper hoax [updated]"
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times, “It’s positively clear” that Lancaster cops are failures. God knows what they have planned in the future for their next 15 minutes of fame/shame. A true authority needs to replace every one of these useless imbiciles for real police officers.
The Mad Hatter says
Soon our jails and prisons will be filled with ex sheriffs…just ask Lee.
Hector Estrada says
RX should give a formal apology to the public for making negative comments about individuals with mental health.
God Bless Our America , folks !
Does God bless the other 194 countries on the planet, or is it only America that “god” blesses?
Another article said he had been counseled about his poor work performance and dishonesty, before this incident.
When will Rex get counseling for lying about the event and blaming the innocent mentally ill people in the building that Rex himself made glowing remarks about when it opened?
LOL, you would think after all Rex keeps doing, the voters in Lancaster would show up to vote him out. Rex is Rex, and always has been. It’s the voters fault for allowing him to be mayor all these years. Listen up voters: Elections are held in April (for decades); It’s not the churches fault; Very low voter turnout that he counts on keeps him in office. He’s your mayor because no one cares to change the status quo. Lancaster BLVD. was better before Rex changed it, and I blame the lazy voters that don’t vote. Complaining isn’t a solution.
The voters of Lancaster are idiots.
The fault is shared between the people who vote for Rex and the people who don’t vote at all. Shame on the fools who keep this man in office where he continues to spew his hatred for the weak and lavish riches upon his contributors. Shame on the majority of people who have the power to send Rex to a nice retirement at his Laguna palace but who fail to vote.
Shame on Lancaster.
William…Thank you for your intelligent comment!
Hoax Attack says
The LACSD’s downward spiral continues.
God Bless Our America , folks !
I still dont understand why he would do something so stupid
They said he was getting bad performance reviews at work.