Investigators say Pejhmaun Iraj Khosroabadi, 33, also known as PJ, shot a 27-year-old officer multiple times during a traffic stop Monday night. As of Tuesday evening, this officer remained hospitalized in critical condition.
Khosroabadi’s family said he was a former Marine who traveled to Afghanistan more than a decade ago and never fully returned home.
“When he came back, he was so traumatized that he didn’t want to talk to anyone,” his sister, Shamaya Shayesteh, told Eyewitness News.
She added that her brother suffered from PTSD.
“He lost so many of his brothers who fought with him and he is the last one standing,” she said.
Khosroabadi was arrested Tuesday morning after a 12-hour manhunt in the San Fernando Valley. He had spent the night in a homeless man’s tent in Van Nuys.
Deric Lewis told Eyewitness News that Khosroabadi entered his tent Monday night armed, hiding from law enforcement after the shooting.
Lewis claims Khosroabadi admitted shooting the CHP officer.
“He says he’s a Marine and he didn’t want to go to jail, and he had troop members who committed suicide. He was nervous all night and he had a gun,” he said. Lewis. “We just gave him cigarettes and talked to him. He said he shot that officer, he told us, and he had blood all over his clothes.
“He kept saying ‘I’m dead, I’m dead, I’m dead.’ He kept saying that, but I’m sure he probably has some kind of PTSD,” Lewis said. “He said he was in one of the bloodiest battles in Afghanistan, but he also said he had two platoon members this week to kill themselves.”
Khosroabadi’s family said they had been trying to help him for years, but he refused. He sought VA help recently but couldn’t get an appointment until January.
“It hurt us a lot to see this because we have family in law enforcement so if we ever got that call we would also be very sad and we are so sorry,” Shayesteh said.
His brother, Robert Thompson Khosroabadi, sent his prayers and condolences to the injured officer and his family.
“We would like PJ’s mental health to be addressed,” he said. “I don’t think he deserves jail, he deserves a hospital.”
Khosroabadi’s family said two men he served with committed suicide this week and they believe this led to Monday night’s incident.
In the United States, 22 veterans commit suicide every day and his family fears that he will also become one of those statistics. Yet Koshrobadi still faces a potential attempted murder charge.
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