ESCALON, CA - An Escalon police officer was shot in the shoulder with his own gun early Tuesday morning.
The incident took place just before 4 a.m. behind a Rite Aid drugstore on Highway 120 in central Escalon which is east of Manteca in San Joaquin County.
According to police, the officer was checking what was termed suspicious activity behind the drugstore when a man rushed and overpowered him, grabbed the officer's service weapon and fired it. The shooter got away.
The officer, whose name has not been released, was taken to a Modesto hospital where he is recovering, according to Escalon Police Chief Jim Shaw.
The gunman was described as over 6 feet tall, large, with curly hair. He may have been Hispanic.
Shaw said his officer was checking around the drugstore because the business had been burglarized four times recently. Shaw said there have been a rash of commercial burglaries where the burglars have generally been looking for drugs.
The wounded officer has been with the Escalon Police Department four or five years.
The Rite Aid corporation is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the crime. Tipsters were urged to contact the Escalon Police Department.