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LBPD Provides New Info Re Sunday Officer-Involved Shooting That Kills Man Believed To Have Gun In Crowded Park, PCH & Walnut

Several Officers Opened Fire; Weapon Later Found in Suspect's Car Nearby

PCH/Walnut LBPD park shooting(Feb. 18, updated Feb. 19, 2001) -- LBPD has provided new details regarding the February 18 officer-involved shooting (carried as breaking news within hours on that killed a man believed to have a gun in a park near PCH and Walnut.

LBPD says several officers fired their weapons at the suspect. Police also say the suspect's gun was later found in his vehicle, parked close to where the shooting occurred.

The deceased suspect was identified as Jose Mendoza, a 21 year old L.A. resident.

As many as 200-300 park users, including families and children, may have been in the area at the time, some of whom likely witnessed all or some of the events. Many were interviewed by LBPD as police awaited the arrival of the L.A. County Coroner for removal of the body. Police say some of those who indicated they witnessed the incident were transported [apparently by busloads, in photo foreground] to the LBPD for questioning by homicide detectives.

LBPD says that at approximately 3:30 p.m. Sunday, LBPD received a 911 emergency phone call stating there was a man with a gun at Chittick Park in the area of PCH and Walnut Ave. A description was supplied to responding patrol officers and when officers arrived at the park, they were contacted by witnesses who pointed out the armed suspect.

[Begin excerpts of verbatim LBPD press release text:]

"Several officers approached the male Hispanic suspect pointed out by witnesses and immediately gave him verbal commands both in English and Spanish. When the suspect failed to respond and comply with the comands, an officer involved shooting resulted. Several officers fired their weapons at the suspect, eliminating any further threat. Long Beach Fire Department Paramedics responded and pronounced the man dead at the scene...

"The suspect's weapon was found in his vehicle, which was parked close to where the shooting occurred...As in all officer-involved shootings, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office will investigate this case..."

[End LBPD press release text]

Further details to follow as they become available.

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