‘Sorry, you startled me’ – Sheriff’s deputy shoots woman at point-blank range

Scott Olson / Getty Images / AFP
Scott Olson / Getty Images / AFP

A 36-year-old single mom from California is on the road to recovery after being shot at point-blank range by a police officer who says the woman startled him.

Jennifer Orey of Spring Valley, CA is doing well after a Tuesday altercation in her own backyard that sent her to the emergency room.

San Diego County Sheriff’s Deputy Luke Berhalter shot Orey earlier in the week after the officer unexpectedly came across the woman. Deputy Berhalter was on Orey’s property, unannounced, investigating reports of a “suspicious male” in the neighborhood at the time of the incident.

“At some point, while in the backyard of the residence, there was contact between the deputies, who had their weapons drawn, and a female resident of the home,” Sheriff Lt. Larry Nesbit tells reporters.

James Morgan, the woman’s brother, says that the cop didn’t respond to his sister’s calls for him to identify himself.

“He fired without warning, saying freeze, or anything. Then just as she saw the black smoke coming out the barrel she turned her body,” Morgan tells Fox 5 San Diego. “When she got shot, her initial reaction was the pain and then she went to put her hand on the officer who shot her and he said, ‘Get your hand off me,'” he tells 10 News.

The brother adds to KSWB-TV that when his sister asked the officer why she was shot, he responded, “Well, I’m sorry, you startled me.”

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