A man who police claim was armed was shot and killed by officers in a residential area of Encinitas, California.
Suicidal man is shot multiple times shortly after the police responded to his home
The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department received an emergency call about an armed man who was suicidal from his wife. Officers arrived at the neighborhood on Shadytree Lane at about 9:30am that morning. They say that his wife immediately ran outside and began to explain the situation to them. She also disclosed that he was armed and had a shotgun with him.
In the following minutes, police claim that the man exited the residence and began to walk towards where they were standing. As he approached, at least four shots were fired, although the exact number was unknown. Medical treatment and CPR was administered at the scene, but he died a short time later.
During the initial investigation, there was no clear evidence that the man had ever pointed the gun at the officers on the scene. A lieutenant with the local homicide division said that officers are trained to shoot to kill if their lives are in danger.
Neighbors in the area said that they live in a quiet residential area, and they were surprised that something so horrible could happen nearby. A man who lives next door and claims to be a gun owner said he distinctly recognized the sound of at least four shots being fired at the time.
People who were familiar with the victim said that he and his wife were having marital problems in the months leading up to the incident, which could possibly explain his strange behavior. They say that people in the area were heard talking about their issues in the days leading up to the man’s death.
The identity of the victim and officers on the scene was not released. A full medical investigation is also expected to give an exact cause of death.
Killing a suspect instead of using other means to diffuse the situation
The use of deadly force is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Officers are trained to only open fire and kill someone as a last resort. When someone is killed without proper justification, the officers involved may be disciplined by their departments for police brutality, or sued by the victim’s family in civil court. In rare cases, the officers may be charged with crimes for manslaughter or murder for an unlawful killing.
Learn more about taking legal action
If you need to take formal action against a police officer and possibly file a lawsuit, speak with Jeffrey E. Estes and Associates. You will receive professional guidance related to your particular situation.