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Deputies shoot, kill man threatening cars with spear, officials say

Crime, Law and JusticeLaw EnforcementCrimeShootings

A man shot and killed by sheriff's deputies Thursday night in Santa Clarita was wielding a spear, running in and out of traffic -- striking at least one passing vehicle with the weapon -- and later pulling out a knife, authorities said.

Witnesses flagged down two deputies on patrol at about 8:25 p.m. near the intersection of Shangri-La Drive and Soledad Canyon Road and told them about the man, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

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The man, who was not immediately identified, was found standing on a center median with a metal spear and "behaving strangely," the Sheriff's Department said.

Priscilla Garcia told KTLA she was in the middle of the fray when the man came at her vehicle and stabbed at her back window.

"And he charged at me with such anger like he wanted to hurt me," she said.

The man ignored orders from the deputies and, after striking a passing vehicle with his spear, he was shot by at least one of the officers but appeared "unscathed" and continued his erratic behavior, the Sheriff's Department said in a news release.

When the deputies moved back toward their vehicle, the man started advancing while wielding a knife, the department said.

That's when at least one deputy fired again and struck the man multiple times in the upper torso. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.

There have been at least 286 homicides caused by officer-involved shootings reported in Los Angeles County since 2007, according to The Times' Homicide Report database.

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ari.bloomekatz@latimes.com

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