DA's Office Determines 3 Officers Shot Garlic Festival Shooter Lawfully

"If we didn't take the action that we took there could be a lot of dead people," an officer said.

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The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday that the three police officers who shot a gunman at last year's Gilroy Garlic Festival did so lawfully.

Santino Legan, 19, opened fire on a crowd of people during the festival's family fair on July 28, 2019, and ultimately killed three people -- a 25-year-old man, a 13-year-old girl and a 6-year-old boy -- and wounded another 17.

Legan used an AK-47 assault rifle to fire 36 shots into the crowd, and was carrying several dozen rounds with him at the time of the shooting.

Gilroy police detective Eric Cryar and officers Robert Basuino and Hugh Del Moral shot and brought Legan down less than a minute after he opened fire, according to the district attorney's office report.

"Placing themselves, literally, in the line of fire to stop a mass murderer undoubtedly saved lives and prevented further bloodshed," report author and Deputy District Attorney Rob Baker wrote. "In light of the grave circumstances of this case, their actions were unquestionably lawful and justified."

After taking shots to the chest, back, hands and legs, Legan shot and killed himself with the AK-47.

"If we didn't take the action that we took there could be a lot of dead people," Cryar said.

The FBI and the Gilroy Police Department continue to investigate the shooting, according to the district attorney's office.

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