The hostile crowd that confronted a lone Modesto police officer and his police dog early Sunday threw glass bottles at the officer, and one suspect punched him in the face, according to details released by Modesto police Tuesday.
Witnesses and police say some in the crowd taunted the officer as they closed in on him, shouting, "Shoot me, shoot me!" when he drew his weapon. Someone in the crowd said, "You know you're not going to make it out of here," said Sgt. Brian Findlen, the police spokesman.
Some witnesses said the face-off was "horrifying" and "like something you would see on 'Cops,' " the TV show that showcases confrontations between police and criminals.
Residents described their neighborhood as "scary," especially after dark. Gang members and regular people live side by side, they said, and neighbors fear retaliation if they call police.
In Sunday's incident, the officer couldn't call for backup during the five to eight minutes he was alone with the crowd because the radio on his belt was broken during the struggle, said Findlen. About a dozen officers responded after 911 calls from neighbors.
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