Bakersfield officer shoots driver who had rifle during traffic stop

This photo provided on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016, by the Bakersfield Police Department shows the weapon Jose Vaca was in possession of when he was shot Monday night by an officer in Bakersfield, Calif., during a traffic stop.

UPDATE: The Bakersfield Police Department on Tuesday, Dec. 27, 2016, identified the officer who opened fire in this situation as Christian Hernandez.

Hernandez, who has been with the Police Department since summer 2013, fired nine shots.

The original story, published Dec. 20, is below.


BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) -- A man with a loaded rifle was shot by an officer late Monday night in east Bakersfield. The shooting took place during a traffic stop in the 1300 block of Oswell Street.

The Bakersfield Police Department said the driver got out of the car with a rifle in his hands. That's when one of the two officers on scene fired several shots, striking the suspect.

Police later identified the driver as 29-year-old Jose Vaca. He had an unregistered .22-caliber semiautomatic rifle, police said.

Vaca is expected to survive and will be arrested following his hospitalization on suspicion of illegal firearm possession and gang participation, according to police.

The passenger in the car was arrested on suspicion of resisting arrest. Police identified him as 27-year-old Rogelio Machuca.

No one else was hurt in the shooting.

The officer who fired shots has been placed on administrative leave. Anyone with information helpful to this investigation is asked to call police at (661) 327-7111.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off