Man says gun was fired during struggle, but officers find no evidence

Taft Police are investigating a report that a gun was fired during an altercation between two men in the downtown area Wednesday evening.

The victim told officers he was struggling with a man when a semiautomatic handgun discharged

No one was injured.

Police were not able to find a shell casing, which would normally be ejected by a semiautomatic weapon, or evidence of a bullet strike.

Police received a call at 8:36 p.m. from a man reporting that another man had brandished a gun in the area of Fourth and Main.

While offers were en route to the call, they were updated that the man now said a shot had been fired. When they arrived, Lt. Pete Aranda said, the found the victim "who appeared to be disoriented and physically and emotionally upset."

Aranda said the man told officers he was walking in the area when he saw the other man some distance away brandishing a handgun and calling him over.

The man told officers he was "fearing for his safety," Aranda said, and he walked over to the armed man. 'When he got close enough to disarm the suspect," he began to struggle with him and tried to disarm him, Aranda said.

During the struggle, the man said the gun discharged, he told police, then the suspect regained control of the weapon and fled the area.

The suspect was described to police as a Hispanic male standing about 6 feet tall with a trimmed beard and missing multiple teeth."

Aranda said officers could find no evidence of a gun being fired.

"A search of the area revealed no indication that a gun had been fired," he said. "We didn't find any bullet strikes or spent casings."