Deputy Stephen Sorensen was shot and killed after he responded to a trespassing call at approximately 1330 hours near Highway 138.
After Deputy Sorensen arrived at the scene, a witness reported hearing about six gun shots and called police. When deputies arrived, they were able to locate Deputy Sorensen’s patrol car, but not the deputy. After searching for about an hour, deputies discovered Deputy Sorensen’s body. He had been shot six times with a .223 caliber rifle. The suspect had tied his feet together and dragged his body through the desert.
Deputies also found chemicals consistent with manufacturing methamphetamine in the immediate area, leading to the theory that Deputy Sorensen had uncovered a meth lab before he was killed.
The suspect was located a week later in a house in the Lake Los Angeles area. He admitted to murdering Deputy Sorensen when contacted on his cell phone. When the suspect refused to surrender, deputies attempted to end the standoff by firing tear gas into the house, and assaulting the structure with a huge, mechanized battering ram. They were met with gunfire minutes before the house erupted in flames and burned to the ground. The suspect’s body was later located inside, along with Deputy Sorensen’s gun and radio.
Deputy Sorensen had served with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office for 12 years, and is survived by his wife and son.