Deputy Sheriff Nelson Henry Yamamoto

Deputy Sheriff Nelson Henry Yamamoto

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, California

End of Watch Tuesday, March 31, 1992

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Nelson Henry Yamamoto

Deputy Sheriff Nelson Yamamoto died two days after being shot when he responded to a man with a gun call in the 2500 block of Cass Place in the Walnut Park area of the county.

Responding deputies observed two armed men inside of a garage at the location. The two subjects exited the front of the garage and exchanged shots with Deputy Yamamoto, who was shot in the abdomen, shoulder, thigh, and foot. One of the two subjects was shot and killed by other deputies.

The man who shot Deputy Yamamoto was able to escape. Investigators determined the man was an illegal alien who was wanted for one murder in the Los Angeles area and for two murders in El Salvador. The man fled to New York where he sought work on a farm. His new employer recognized him on an episode of America's Most Wanted and called the FBI. Special agents and New York State troopers responded to the man's home to interview him.

The subject fled in his car but was shot and killed by officers following a short pursuit.

Deputy Yamamoto had served with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department for three years. He is survived by his parents.


  • Age 26
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Sunday, March 29, 1992
  • Weapon Handgun; .357 caliber
  • Offender Shot and killed

illegal alien

Most Recent Reflection

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We have these memorials not only to remember those who have fallen but to come together as a community and reconnect with families; not just the ones from the same blood line. It is extremely important to keep on contact with your partners because you do not know when it could be the last time you see them. In addition, we have to take care of each other because not all deaths result from being on duty. Some happen off duty where the conflict is ourselves.
Yamamoto was 26 years old. Being a Deputy Sheriff is a great privilege especially at a young age. I feel like a lot of younger law enforcement personnel can relate because Yamamoto was only on patrol for less than two months. We discussed in class that anything could happen when you are on duty. It doesn’t matter if you are a ten year Deputy Sheriff or a first day on patrol. Anything can happen and I respect every single law enforcement officer because they put their life on the line every single day. Thank you Deputy Yamamoto for your courageous actions and perseverance to continue the mission.

Armando Penales

April 4, 2019

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