Family of the 29-year-old man arrested Monday morning in connection with the fatal ambush-style shooting of a Los Angeles County Deputy Sheriff who was sitting in his patrol vehicle in the Antelope Valley over the weekend, are speaking out about his struggles with mental health.
Authorities believe Kevin Salazar ambushed and killed Deputy Ryan “Clink” Clinkunbroomer, 30, an eight-year veteran of the sheriff’s department, at around 6 p.m. Saturday while the deputy sat at a red light near an intersection in Palmdale.
Jessica Salazar, the suspect’s sister, said this is in no way an excuse for his actions, but that her brother is in need of professional help, that he’s been battling mental health issues and had stopped taking his medications, KTLA reports.
“We’re not justifying anything,” Jessica said. “We feel for that family. It hurts. Nobody wishes to go through that, but I do want you guys to know that my brother had schizophrenia. He had paranoia. He heard voices.”