Police kill man carrying fake gun on Hollywood Boulevard

Jul 15, 2021, 6:20 PM | Updated: 7:19 pm

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles police fatally shot a man Thursday who was carrying what turned out to be a replica handgun on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, authorities said.

A woman suffered a minor injury to her lower body, but the Los Angeles Police Department did not immediately know how she had been hurt. She was taken to the hospital.

Officers responded to Hollywood Boulevard around 11:20 a.m. following reports of a man walking around with a handgun along the Walk of Fame. At least one person reported seeing him pointing a gun at someone.

Officers arrived to find a man who matched the description and at least one officer fired their weapon.

The shooting occurred near the famed corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue, and less than a block from the Dolby Theatre, where the Oscars are normally presented.

Police did not say what prompted the shooting or whether any de-escalation methods were attempted first. The fake handgun was recovered at the scene.

“I’m just told that it appears to be exactly like a gun,” said LAPD Detective Meghan Aguilar, a police spokesperson, during a media briefing at the scene.

It was not immediately clear how many officers opened fire, or how many times the man had been struck.

“Exactly what the suspect did with that handgun that led the officers to fire at him will be determined” by looking at videos and interviewing witnesses, Aguilar said.

The shooting caused bedlam on the busy street.

“People started scrambling, and there’s kids crying and moms trying to get out of there and tourists confused, and then of course everyone’s cellphones started popping out,” witness Eddie Lopez told the Los Angeles Times. “It was wild.”

“People started running around” when the gunfire erupted, witness Carlos Monroy told KTLA. Monroy said he saw police trying to resuscitate the man.

The man, whose name has not been released, was pronounced dead at a hospital. It appears he was in his 40s or 50s. No officers were hurt.

Detectives are interviewing witnesses to the shooting, as well as people may have been assaulted by the man before police encountered him.

Aguilar said police will look at body-worn camera footage, as well as surveillance video, that may have captured the shooting.

The incident takes place just eight days after the state attorney general announced new protocols that will send a team of investigators from the California Department of Justice to probe when a police officer fatally shoots an unarmed civilian.

The move comes after state lawmakers passed legislation giving the attorney general new responsibilities in the wake of George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis.

The state attorney general’s office said its investigators were sent to Los Angeles.

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Police kill man carrying fake gun on Hollywood Boulevard