LOS ANGELES (AP) _ A police officer assigned to stop people from firing guns in the air on New Year's Eve died Thursday, a day after being shot in the head struggling with a gun-toting reveler.

The suspect, a reputed gang member whose name was not immediately released, was shot and killed moments later by two other officers.

Officer Steven Gajda, 29, was shot a few minutes before midnight outside a house in East Los Angeles. He died Thursday afternoon.

Deputy Chief Martin Pomeroy said Gajda a fellow officer ``saw a party that was a little out of control, a little boisterous, so they stopped by to issue a warning.''

``Apparently, there were some gang members at the party,'' Pomeroy said. ``Some people fled the police and we ran after them.''

Gajda chased one man who appeared to have something in his waistband, and the man shot the officer in a struggle.

On Thursday, neighbors milled in front of the house where the shooting took place. About 12 people stood inside the fenced-in yard, but they declined to speak to reporters.