Update: Manhunt underway for suspect who approached police department, shot deputy in the face

KATE FELDMAN

New York Daily News

California cops are searching for a man who allegedly opened fire on a police station, shot a sheriff’s deputy in the face and killed another man Wednesday.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office identified the suspect early Thursday as 26-year-old Mason James Lira, who officials described as a “transient.”

Lira allegedly opened fire at the Paso Robles Police Department building around 3:45 a.m. local time Wednesday, shooting the responding officer in the face.

The unidentified deputy is in serious but stable condition, as of Wednesday.

During the manhunt, authorities found a local man fatally shot in the back of the head two blocks away at the Paso Robles train station and tied his death to Lira. It’s unclear if the man was killed before or after the police department shooting.

San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson called it “an unprovoked attack on local law enforcement.”

“One of my sheriff’s deputies who was responding to the aid of the Paso Robles Police Department was shot in the face by a suspect that was laying in ambush at the police department in downtown,” he said at a press conference Wednesday.

Anyone who spots Lira is asked to 911 and to not engage with him. He is considered armed and dangerous.

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