A California family will be celebrating the holiday season this year without their father thanks to the police. The Los Angeles Times reports that a Bakersfield cop fired multiple bullets at 73-year-old Francisco Serna, hitting him nine times. Serna was apparently unarmed.
According to police, they received a call at 12:35 a.m. on Monday saying that a man was brandishing a handgun. When officers arrived at the scene a witness pointed out a man standing in a nearby driveway. No one has said what happened next. But at some point an officer fired, striking Serna and killing him. Investigators have combed the area and have not found any weapon. They also searched Serna’s house, where no guns were found. The officer involved, who has not been named, was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.
Serna’s son Roy told the Times his father didn’t own a weapon.
My dad did not own a gun. He was a 73-year-old retired grandpa, just living life. He should have been surrounded by family at old age, not surrounded by bullets.
Roy Serna posted a Facebook video from the scene of the shooting, which he says took place directly across the street from his parents’ house. According to Roy, his father liked taking late night walks to tire himself out before bed because he sometimes had trouble sleeping. He added that Francisco was suffering from early stage dementia and had begun to show signs of deterioration in his mental condition in recent weeks.
Francisco Serna originally lived and worked in McFarland, California, until his retirement around 10 years ago. He and his wife moved to Bakersfield about eight years ago to be closer to their children. Now, thanks to what appears to be a too hasty reaction by a Bakersfield cop, Serna’s family will be without their father for what may have been the last Christmas before he was overtaken by the progress of his disease.
Here is Roy Serna’s video about the shooting, via Facebook: