Whittier police fatally shot a man as he held his 4-year-old daughter at knifepoint Monday night, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The man and his estranged wife, parents of the girl and a 7-year-old boy, were doing a child custody exchange in the lobby of the Whittier police station at about 6 p.m. when he pulled out a knife and forced her into a vehicle with the two children, authorities said.
The couple drove to the 13800 block of Philadelphia Street in Whittier, where the mother exited the vehicle and walked away.
Neighbors told KNBC-TV that they saw the couple arguing in the car with the children in the backseat.
“They stopped in the middle of the street, and she just fled out of the car and ran into the neighbor’s house. She just said that he was going to kill her,” a woman told the station.
The man drove away with the children still in the vehicle, according to the Sheriff’s Department.
A short time later, the man returned to Philadelphia Street, took the girl out of the vehicle and held her at knifepoint, authorities said.
Whittier police officers arrived on the scene and shot the man, authorities said. He was struck at least once in the upper torso and taken to a hospital, where he died.
A weapon was recovered from the scene, the Sheriff’s Department said.
The shooting is being investigated by Whittier police and the Sheriff’s Department.
Anyone with information about the shooting has been asked to contact the sheriff’s homicide bureau at (323) 890-5500 or, to report an anonymous tip, to call (800) 222-8477.