Suspect armed with knife dies after officer-involved shooting in San Fernando

SAN FERNANDO, Calif. (KABC) -- A suspect who authorities say was armed with a knife has died at a hospital after being shot in an officer-involved shooting in San Fernando on Sunday, according to Los Angeles County sheriff's officials.

LASD homicide detectives were assisting San Fernando police with an investigation into the officer-involved shooting, which occurred at an apartment building in the 100 block of Harding Avenue.

The shooting, involving San Fernando police, happened on the third floor of the building at about 11 a.m., officials said. The suspect, believed to be 59 years old, was struck by gunfire and transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead. His identity was not immediately released.

Authorities said the suspect was armed with a knife and allegedly assaulted his girlfriend. Officials said the woman was heard screaming for help before and after officers arrived to the apartment.

After having to force their way into the home, officers tried to subdue the armed suspect with a substance similar to pepper spray. Soon after, the officer-involved shooting occurred, involving three officers.

"This was a domestic violence incident. She was a victim of an assault today, and that's when the officers were called to aid and help her as she screamed for help inside that apartment," said Lt. Joe Mendoza of the LASD.

According to a nearby resident, the man was a Vietnam War veteran with possible mental health issues, but officials did not confirm that information.

A neighbor who lives across the street said he saw officers head into the building with what appeared to be a battering ram, and minutes later, he heard loud noises as if they were breaking down a door.

"It took them a while to actually break down the door, and once they eventually broke the door down, you heard the door open. A couple of seconds later, I'd say seven, eight seconds later, you heard maybe four, five gunshots back-to-back," recalled neighbor Carlos Calderon.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the LASD Homicide Bureau at (323)890-5500. If you prefer to provide information anonymously, you may call "Crime Stoppers" by dialing (800) 222-TIPS (8477).
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