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Inspector shot in head by alleged hoarder expected to survive

July 6, 2012 |  7:53 am

Alleged Long Beach hoarder

A Long Beach man remained in custody Friday, a day after allegedly shooting a code enforcement inspector in the face and firing at police during a seven-hour standoff.

Code enforcement officers arrived at the home about 8 a.m. Thursday to serve an inspection warrant in response to hoarding complaints. When they arrived he fired at them, police said, hitting one of the code officers in the head.

Police spokeswoman Nancy Pratt said the injured inspector was taken in a patrol car to a hospital. His condition was not immediately known, but Pratt said he was expected to survive.

Neighbors said the man's home and yard were filled with junk and other items, and the man has received several notices from the city to clean up the property. Pratt confirmed the residence "had been a problem for code enforcement over the past few years."

Jill Lofton, 53, stood at the corner of Gaviota Avenue and Curry Street, not far from the standoff, and watched as authorities prepared to enter the home with a battering ram. She said she had known the resident for 17 years.

"He looked like a homeless guy, but he really wasn't," she said. "If you got past that and you had started talking to him, you'd find out he was genuinely a nice guy."

"I think the city should have intervened in other ways, not just send code enforcement officers," Lofton said.

She said four years ago, city crews came to his house with commercial-size trash bins. They chopped his tree down and removed some of the furniture he had outside.

Another neighbor, 19-year-old Chris Miller, also described the man as nice and outgoing -- but unkempt. The man's mother had recently died, Miller said, and the man "took it very hard."


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Two more men charged in slaying of girl's alleged pimp

Alleged Long Beach hoarder in custody after seven-hour standoff

-- Ruben Vives in Long Beach and Kate Mather in Los Angeles