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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.