Police continue to investigate the deadly officer-involved shooting of a 32-year-old man who is suspected of fatally shooting another man at a City Heights apartment complex.
Gunfire at the residential complex in the 3800 block of Euclid Avenue was reported shortly after 3:30 p.m., according to San Diego police. Officers found a 62 year-old Hispanic male with at least one gunshot wound. The victim was evacuated to an area where San Diego Fire-Rescue personnel began treating him before taking him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Back at the shooting scene, the officers were directed to an adjacent apartment where the suspect had possibly fled to. They established a perimeter and called for backup from a SWAT unit. As the SWAT officers began arriving, the suspect emerged from his apartment and was given directions to surrender but refused to cooperate.
“The suspect walked half way down the stairs towards the officers’ positions and challenged them to come get him before retreating back into his apartment,” police said.
The suspect — described by police as a 32-year-old Asian male — allegedly emerged again from his residence and began walking down the stairs toward the officers.
“When the suspect had descended half way down the stairs, he extended a pistol in the direction of the officers. Three officers fired their weapons at the suspect, striking him several times,” a San Diego Police Department statement said. “Specially trained STAR medics deployed with the SWAT team to provide aid, but the suspect was pronounced deceased at the scene. A firearm and a knife were recovered.”
The suspect’s mother allegedly contacted police earlier in the week after he threatened her with a firearm and fired several rounds from a handgun in the residence. Police investigated that report and were in the process of preparing an arrest warrant and a restraining order.
Police say the suspect’s mother told investigators her son wanted to be involved in a shooting with the police and to commit “suicide by cop.”
The names of the officers involved are not being released yet. Two of the officers are assigned to the department’s Northern Division and were deployed as part of the SWAT team while the third officer is assigned to the Canine Unit.
When the SDPD Homicide Unit completes its investigation, the case will be reviewed by the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office to determine if the officers bear any criminal liability for their actions. The Internal Affairs Unit will conduct an investigation to determine if there were any policy violations, and the Shooting Review Board will evaluate the tactics used by the officers. The Community Review Board on Police Practices will conduct a review of the incident and provide any appropriate recommendations. The Federal Bureau of Investigations and the United States Attorney’s Office will also be monitoring the investigation.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the Homicide Unit at 619-531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.
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