Photo gallery: Chino Police Officer Shot during robbery in Chino
CHINO -- Police are looking for a man who robbed a bank and shot an officer Wednesday.
The suspect, wearing a bullet-proof vest and carrying an assault rifle, took an undisclosed amount of money from California Bank and Trust, 5455 Riverside Drive.
He dropped some of the money in the parking lot, said Chino spokeswoman Michelle Van Der Linden.
As he was exiting the bank, a Chino police officer on patrol spotted him.
Four shots were fired, although, it was unknown if the officer returned fire.
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Shooting at bank
Police are looking for a man who robbed a bank and shot an officer Wednesday. The suspect, wearing a bullet-proof vest and carrying a an assault rifle, took an undisclosed amount of money from California Bank and Trust, at 5455 Riverside Drive.
The officer suffered at least one gunshot wound when the robber opened fire, Van Der Linden said, and drove himself to a hospital about a block away.
Michael Armijo, 48, of Eastvale was walking from the Post Office in the area when a police car pulled to the Chino Valley hospital.
"He must have been going about 70 mph," he said about the police officer who was driving.
Armijo said the driver slammed on his brakes and then accelerated, repeating this a few times before stopping right in front of the building.
"It was like he couldn't control it," said Armijo, who has a business in Chino.
The officer then threw open his door and started screaming, "Help me, help me, I've been hit.
Armijo ran to the car to assist the officer while another witness went to get a doctor.
"He kept saying 'I got shot in the leg, I got shot in the leg,' " said Armijo, who saw several multiple bullet holes in the car.
Medical officials pulled the officer from his car and placed him on a gurney then wheeled him in to the hospital, Armijo said.
"They told me the police officer was going to be OK," he said.
The unidentified officer was transferred to a different hospital where he was listed in stable condition.
Dispatchers received a report of shots fired and an officer down on Riverside Drive near 11th Street at 10:50 a.m.
Law enforcement from Ontario, Upland, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, the FBI and the California Highway Patrol came to the scene and began a manhunt for the shooter.
Officials closed off a square block around the bank, which bumped up against a neighborhood, to look for the gunman who remained on the loose Wednesday afternoon.
Paulette Sparks said she was inside her home when she heard "a bunch of shots."
"It echoed in here," said Sparks, 43. "It felt like it was in my front yard."
After the chaos, police officers came by to talk to neighbors, asking if they had seen anyone suspicious in the area.
"I looked in my back yard, but I didn't see anything," Sparks said.
She believes the suspect could have escaped through the alley behind her house.
"That alley takes you everywhere, out to all the streets," she said.
Chino Valley Unified School District placed Anna Borba Elementary School, Walnut Avenue Elementary School and Chino High School on lockdown in response to the shooting, said district spokeswoman Julie Gobin.
The lockdown was lifted about 12:30 p.m.
Gobin said there is no information indicating whether the gunman actually entered any of the campuses.
Staff writer Melissa Pinion-Whitt contributed to this report.