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Bellflower Man Shot, Killed By LA Deputies After Charging At Them With Garden Hoe, Officials Say

BELLFLOWER (CBSLA) – Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies responding to a street takeover shot and killed a suspect in Bellflower early Thursday morning after he allegedly stabbed a man with a garden hoe.

His family believes deputies could have done more to de-escalate the situation.

LA Deputies Shoot, Kill Suspect In Bellflower After Responding To Street Takeover
At the scene of a street takeover in Bellflower, Calif., on March 3, 2022, after which a man was shot and killed by Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies. (RMG News)

The shooting occurred in the area of Artesia Boulevard and Downey Avenue at 12:10 a.m.

According to the sheriff's department, the situation unfolded when deputies were first dispatched to a nearby street takeover. As some of the racers were trying to disperse, a collision occurred, which was captured on video.

LASD said deputies were dealing with the takeover and crash, they were approached by a man who claimed he had just been stabbed with a garden hoe about 100 yards away.

The victim reportedly pointed out the alleged suspect, 32-year-old Edgar Ortiz who suffers from schizophrenia. Maria Ortiz and his family claimed that the sound of the crash woke up both of them but the chaotic street takeover frightened her schizophrenic son.

Ortiz's mother said she came outside the apartment she shared with her son after hearing the crash only to find deputies chasing him down the street.

When deputies attempted to detain Ortiz, he ran south on Downey Avenue.  When they caught up, he then turned around and charged at them while swinging the garden hoe, which had spikes on the end, prompting them to open fire, the sheriff's department said. He was shot in front of the home he and his six children lived in for many years.

Ortiz was taken to a hospital with multiple gunshot wounds, where he died. His mother said Ortiz was expecting a seventh child next month.

Ortiz's family said that deputies could have used less than lethal force instead of opening fire on him.

LA Deputies Shoot, Kill Suspect In Bellflower After Responding To Street Takeover
At the scene of a street takeover in Bellflower, Calif., on March 3, 2022, after which a man was shot and killed by Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies. (CBSLA)

No deputies were hurt. Investigators do not believe the street takeover was connected to the stabbing, the sheriff's department told CBSLA. The stabbing victim was treated by fire department medical crews.

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