Downtown Los Angeles header image
Los Angeles Police Department Badge


News Release

Monday, October 19, 2020

Media Relations

Officer-Involved Shooting in Topanga Area NRF047-20ma

October 27, 2020

The officer involved in the below incident has been identified as Police Officer II Sean Steelmon, Serial No. 40131 from Topanga Division.

**The following information is based on a preliminary and ongoing investigation, which continues to evolve as investigators interview witnesses, review physical and electronic records, and analyze forensic evidence. The Department's understanding of the facts and circumstances may change as additional evidence is collected and analyzed**

Los Angeles: Los Angeles Police Department's (LAPD) Force Investigation Division is investigating an officer-involved shooting (OIS) that occurred in Topanga Division.

On October 15, 2020, around 1:20 a.m., LAPD Topanga Division patrol officers responded to a radio call at a motel in the 20100 block of Vanowen Street. The comments of the radio call indicated an assault with a deadly weapon (ADW) had occurred. After arriving, the officers were able to determine an ADW had not occurred and they left the location.

Around 2:20 a.m., officers were called to the location a second time. The motel staff requested a woman, later identified as 51-year-old Julie Ann Archer, be removed from the property. Archer was in one of the motel rooms and was not a registered guest. Archer refused to come out of the motel room she had locked herself inside of; at which time, the officers used a key the motel staff had provided them to unlock the door. The door opened but was secured from inside by a chain. Archer extended her hand through the opening of the door and was holding a handgun, resulting in an officer-involved-shooting. Archer was struck by gunfire and dropped the handgun.

Archer was transported to a local hospital where she received medical treatment for a non-life-threatening gunshot wound. No officers were injured.

A loaded handgun was located at the scene and recovered as evidence.

LAPD's specialized Force Investigation Division responded to the scene and interviewed witnesses and supervised the collection of evidence by the Forensic Science Division. A representative from the Office of the Inspector General responded and monitored the scene investigation.

The complete investigation will be reviewed by the Chief of Police, the Board of Police Commissioners, and the Office of the Inspector General to determine the thoroughness and accuracy of the investigation and whether the use of deadly force complied with LAPD's policies and procedures. Additionally, representatives from the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office who responded to the scene will review the subsequent FID investigation; evidence collected and witness statements to determine if the force used by the officer was reasonable.