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California Deputy Shot in Face, Suspect in Custody

October 02, 2015  | 

Suspect Brian Ballasch was shot by deputies and is being held on attempted murder of a peace officer. (Photo: Mariposa County SO)
Suspect Brian Ballasch was shot by deputies and is being held on attempted murder of a peace officer. (Photo: Mariposa County SO)

A Mariposa County, CA, sheriff's deputy was shot twice -- once in the mouth -- after a traffic stop that led to a chase and crash Thursday morning, according to officers.

The incident began about 6 a.m. when a deputy tried to stop a vehicle for erratic driving. However, the driver did not stop and continued heading south on Highway 49, just south of the town of Mariposa, according to the sheriff's office.

The driver, identified as Brian Ballasch, of Merced, crashed his vehicle into other sheriff's vehicles assisting with the stop.

Ballasch then got out of his vehicle and, after a short argument, began firing at deputies, hitting one in the face and torso, investigators said.

The deputy, who is a 10-year veteran of the force, was airlifted to a hospital and is expected to survive, according to officials.

Ballasch was shot by deputies and taken into custody for attempted murder of a peace officer, the sheriff's office told KRCA TV.

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