A Riverside County sheriff’s deputy Friday fatally shot a man who authorities said charged at him with a tire iron on Interstate 10 near Whitewater.
The man died at the scene of the shooting, which occurred about 8:45 a.m. near Whitewater Canyon Road, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. He was not immediately identified.
Sgt. Lionel Murphy told reporters at the scene that a deputy responded to Whitewater Canyon Road on a report that a man was throwing rocks at vehicles, and he saw the suspect smashing the window of a parked car with a tire iron and other unspecified objects.
The deputy ordered the man to drop the tire iron, but he instead walked toward I-10 and onto the interstate, Murphy said.
The deputy drove his patrol vehicle onto I-10, stopped traffic, and again ordered the man to drop the tire iron, but the man instead charged at him, wielding the tire iron, Murphy said. The deputy then fired an undisclosed number of gunshots at the man, striking him, the sergeant said.
The deputy, identified only as a K-9 deputy, was not hurt.
The shooting prompted the closure of the entire westbound side of Interstate 10 east of Whitewater Canyon Road for several hours while investigators worked the scene.
The deputy will be placed on administrative leave, as is routine in law enforcement shootings under investigation.
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