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San Diego police kill man armed with knife

Suspect in attempted robbery refused to drop weapon, officials say.

August 04, 2009|Tony Perry

San Diego police shot and killed a knife-wielding man Monday afternoon moments after he tried to rob a downtown restaurant, officials said.

The shooting occurred in the street near the Horton Plaza shopping center.

Initial reports say three officers sought to persuade the man to drop the knife, but he refused.

The man's identity was not released.

Police said they responded to a call at 4:23 p.m. about a man who had stolen a knife from an outdoor table at a Gaslamp Quarter restaurant and then displayed the knife at another restaurant while demanding money.

Three minutes later, police found the man on a street corner near the two restaurants.

An officer ordered him to stop.

Instead, according to police, he took a knife from his backpack and refused commands to drop it.

The man then "advanced on the officer in a menacing manner while screaming obscenities with the knife raised," according to Lt. William Stetson of the police department's homicide unit.

The officer fired and the man was pronounced dead at the scene. The officer is described as a seven-year veteran of the department and is assigned to the gang unit.

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tony.perry@latimes.com

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