More than 1,000 people attended a service Sunday for a 13-year-old boy who was shot dead by a Sonoma County sheriff's deputy. The youth was walking with a pellet gun in Santa Rosa at the time.
Andy Lopez, an eighth-grader, was shot seven times last week by a sheriff's deputy who mistook his pellet gun for an authentic assault rifle.
The boy's father, according to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, at the service cried: "My son, my beautiful son."
Hundreds of the mourners wore white, which had been requested by Lopez's mother to "represent the angel that he is and was."
On Tuesday afternoon, law enforcement authorities said deputies responded to a report of a "suspicious person" in a southwest Santa Rosa neighborhood.
"The deputy's mind-set was that he was fearful that he was going to be shot," said Santa Rosa police Lt. Paul Henry.
Lopez was near Moorland and West Robles avenues when he was spotted carrying the pellet gun about 3:15 p.m. by two deputies on routine patrol.
Henry said the deputy who opened fire believed the AK-47-styled pellet gun "was an authentic weapon."