Officer shot at during scuffle with La Honda shooting suspect


By Scott Morris | Bay City News Service

A Pacifica police officer was shot at during a scuffle on a highway embankment with a suspect accused of shooting and critically injuring two La Honda men on Saturday morning, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office.

The officer spotted 36-year-old Bernard James Hofler of Grandy, North Carolina, walking on state Highway 1 south of Manor Drive. When the officer tried to stop him, they got into a struggle, according to the Sheriff's Office.

They tumbled down an embankment together and Hofler allegedly fired a single shot, missing the officer. The officer disarmed Hofler and arrested him, sheriff's officials said.

Hofler and the officer were both taken to a hospital to be treated for minor injuries.

The Sheriff's Office had already obtained a warrant for Hofler's arrest for shooting a 76-year-old man and a 53-year-old man outside their home in the area of Mindego Hill and Alpine roads in La Honda on Saturday morning, March 12.

A homeowner saw a man, later identified as Hofler, leaving his house at about 7:15 a.m. When the homeowner confronted him, he shot the homeowner in the head and chest, sheriff's officials said.

When the homeowner's tenant came outside, Hofler allegedly shot him in the head and chest as well. The homeowner made it to a neighbor's house to ask for help as the suspect drove away in the homeowner's 2006 Jaguar station wagon.

The station wagon was found abandoned on Monday at the Daly City BART station, sheriff's officials said.

After he was treated for the injuries suffered in his scuffle with the officer, Hofler was booked into Maguire Correctional Facility in Redwood City.

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call Detective Joe Cang at (650) 259-2417 or send an email to The phone number for the anonymous tip line is (800) 547-2700.

Editor's note: The San Mateo County Sheriff's Office initially identified the suspect in the shooting as James Bernard Hofler, and that name was used in an earlier version of this story. According to court records, his name is Bernard James Hafler.

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3 people like this
Posted by Georgia
a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2016 at 8:05 pm

Good work and huge relief! And everyone reading this, please hold all good thoughts & best wishes for the victims of this heinous violence.

5 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Mar 16, 2016 at 8:09 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

Great police work by this officer. [part removed.]

8 people like this
Posted by G.Y.
a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2016 at 9:41 pm

Thankfully they got him. [part removed.]

Both Will and John (victims) are exceptional individuals. The kind of guys you'd be happy to see your sister date. Truly great people.

[part removed.]

Like this comment
Posted by squirrel
a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on Mar 17, 2016 at 5:36 am

squirrel is a registered user.

WOW we in New York are very thankful for this capture. Thank you to the police for finding him. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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