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S.D. sheriff 'cautiously optimistic' about wounded deputies

September 25, 2012 |  7:33 pm

Two San Diego County Sheriff’s Department deputies were shot Tuesday in what was described by officials as a 15-minute gun battle with a suspect in a child-abuse case.

Deputy Ali Perez and Sgt. Craig Johnson were wounded when they went to an apartment in Lakeside in eastern San Diego County to question the suspect.

The suspect, identified as Daniel Witczak, was also shot.

The deputies and the suspect were taken to hospitals for surgery. Sheriff Bill Gore, leaving Sharp Memorial Hospital after being with both deputies, said he was “cautiously optimistic” about their conditions.

Deputies went to the apartment after a woman reported finding pictures of her boyfriend in sexually explicit poses with her two young girls.

Capt. Duncan Fraser said Witczak fired a high-powered rifle at the deputies. Witnesses said a dozen or more shots were exchanged.

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-- Tony Perry in San Diego

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