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Ventura County | IN BRIEF / VENTURA

Deputies Cleared in Thousand Oaks Shooting

January 26, 2002

Six Ventura County sheriff's deputies who shot a knife-wielding Thousand Oaks man more than two dozen times last year were cleared of wrongdoing Friday by the county district attorney's office.

Thomas Patton, 56, was shot and killed last October after a dispute with his wife. Patton allegedly confronted deputies with a 12-inch kitchen knife and failed to obey commands to drop the knife.

When Patton lunged, the deputies all fired, hitting him 26 times.

Investigators said a reasonable person could conclude deadly force was necessary to stop the attacker. Patton, they said, was given ample chance to surrender but he remained a threat.

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