On January 19th, Los Angeles Unified School District police Officer Jeff Stenroos claimed he had been shot by a man with a gray ponytail who had been breaking into cars. A massive dragnet followed as hundreds of officers were dispatched to search for the assailant. The manhunt cost an estimated $500,000 and shut down seven square miles of the west San Fernando Valley.
Officer Stenroos has now told investigators that it was all a hoax and that he accidentally fired his gun. Stenroos has been arrested and booked on suspicion of making a false police report.
Detectives continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding the case. "Right now we have more questions than answers," said a senior LAPD official.