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O.C. deputy shot at during suicide probe

March 16, 2009 | 11:05 am

A California Highway Patrol officer was shot at while investigating the death of a woman who committed suicide by leaping from an overpass in Brea and onto the 57 Freeway, where she was struck by a two cars.

The officer wasn’t hit and returned fire before the suspect fled in a light-colored late-model Honda or Acura, authorities said this morning.

“We’re looking at whether [one of the cars] that hit [the woman] on the freeway and the shooting are connected,” said Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, which is investigating the incident.

Amormino said a 43-year-old Fullerton woman jumped onto the freeway from the Imperial Highway overpass about 7:40 p.m. Sunday. She was hit by two northbound cars.

The drivers pulled to the side of the highway, but one quickly left. A CHP officer who responded drove to the next freeway exit at Tonner Canyon Road to see whether the driver might have pulled off there.

“It’s extremely dark there -- no lights,” Amormino said. “It’s been the site of body dumps in the past.”

The officer saw the sillouette of a person apparently inspecting the front of a car. When he pointed a spotlight on the scene, he saw a flash and heard the pop of a gun, Amorminio said.

The person then sped off on Brea Canyon Road, he said.

-- Mike Anton