Crime

Man fatally shot by Grover Beach officers had previous run-in with police, neighbors say

A man who was shot and killed by Grover Beach police Wednesday night after he charged at them with a weapon had at least one previous run-in with law enforcement in the past week, neighbors said.

At about 10:15 p.m., two Grover Beach police officers responded to the 1000 block of Brighton Avenue for a 911 call about a man causing a disturbance outside a home, according to a news release from the Grover Beach Police Department.

Police say the man did not live at the home and was armed with a large blunt object when the two officers confronted him outside.

The man “immediately became argumentative and combative” toward the officers, who asked him to drop his weapon. The man refused and threatened the officers while walking toward them; they used a Taser, but it had no effect on him, the release said.

The suspect “charged toward them with the weapon in a threatening manner, which resulted in an officer-involved shooting.” The officers called for medical aid, but the suspect was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

Police have not released the name of the suspect pending an effort to notify next of kin. They also declined to identify the weapon.

The officers — a sergeant with more than 15 years of service and an officer less than a year on the force — have been placed on paid administrative leave while the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office investigates the shooting.

On Thursday, neighborhood residents said the man had become a frequent presence in the area and described his behavior as odd.

They described the man as white, in his 50s or 60s, with a crew cut and a “frail” build.

A male resident said the man had earlier become combative and shouted profanities at officers when they responded to a call from a woman who lives on the block and with whom residents believe he had a relationship with.

A female neighbor said the man approached her July 6 and asked for yard trimmings and some lemons. The woman described him as polite.

Both residents interviewed declined to give their name on the record, saying they didn’t want to get involved.

On Wednesday night, the neighbors said they heard what sounded like a fight at a nearby residence, including shouting and someone pounding on a vehicle.

The female resident said she looked out the window at one point and saw the man holding a large object, which she said might have been a golf club. Both residents said they heard police shouting for the man to surrender and then two gunshots.

The male resident said he heard the suspect moaning for a short time after the shots were fired. Neither resident saw the shooting take place.

Grover Beach Police Chief John Peters said more information on the incident will be available on Monday.

The last police shooting in San Luis Obispo County occurred just over a year ago, on July 4, 2016. In that case, an Atascadero police officer shot Oceano man Gary Reynolds in the stomach after he crashed his truck into a building and allegedly advanced on officers with a metal bar.

Kayla Missman contributed to this report.

Andrew Sheeler: 805-781-7929, @andrewsheeler

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