South L.A. fatal shooting suspect shot, killed by deputies after exchanging gunfire

SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A man who allegedly shot and killed a woman in South Los Angeles was killed during a shootout with deputies on Wednesday.

Homicide investigators said it all began with an assault with a deadly weapon call involving a female who was apparently shot to death by the suspect in an alley on 106th Street.

The circumstances leading up to the shooting and the relationship between the man and the woman remain unclear.

Responding deputies found the suspect with a shotgun four blocks away near 102nd Street and Vermont Avenue around 1:15 a.m. Deputies said they told him to drop his weapon, but he did not comply. Instead, authorities said he fired at deputies, who then returned fire.

The suspect was struck by gunfire and killed. No deputies were injured in the shooting.

"We have problems when people don't obey commands that are given out on the field. When a situation like this arises where there is essentially a gunfight, that escalates it to a new level, and we have to take immediate action to protect our lives and the lives of others," said Capt. Rod Kusch with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

The identities of those involved were not immediately released. The suspect was said to be 29 years old and the victim was said to be in her late 20s or early 30s.

Area resident Verlena Walker said when she heard the sirens, she assumed it was a car crash.

"My daughter called me. She said, 'No mama, somebody got killed,' and I said, 'Oh no, not again,'" Walker said.

Walker said she supports the deputies who were involved in the early-morning shootout and believes the suspect should have surrendered.

"Put the guns down. Put the guns down, because it don't cause nothing but trouble. Now he's lost his life and he took a life," Walker said.

Alejandro Powell lives just doors away from where the deputy-involved shooting occurred. He said he spent the morning on the sidewalk, unable to get back into his place. He said it's not the best neighborhood by some standards.

"Things happen around here, and it's unfortunate that people that have to live around here have to be affected by it," Powell said.

At least two deputies are now on leave and multiple independent investigations have been opened.

The intersection of Vermont Avenue and Century Boulevard was shut down for the investigation. All roads have since reopened. If you have any information about this case, you're urged to contact the L.A. County Sheriff's Department's Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500.

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