Fullerton police kill suspect during chase

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Image credit: City of Fullerton Police

BELLFLOWER, Calif. (AP) – Fullerton police shot and killed a driver Tuesday who led them on a chase through two counties and then tried to back into officers on a dead-end street, authorities said.

Police in the Orange County city noticed a car driving erratically and tried to stop the driver at about 2:40 a.m., said Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. David Coleman.

Instead, the car sped off. The chase led onto a freeway and about 10 miles west into Los Angeles County.

The driver headed through the communities of Lakewood and Bellflower, where he drove into a cul-de-sac, Coleman said.

In trying to escape, the driver hit a police car, drove forward to the dead end, then reversed and began backing at high speed toward officers who were in the street, Coleman said.

Several opened fire, hitting the man. He died at the scene. His name was not immediately released.

No officers were hurt, Coleman said.

Los Angeles County sheriff’s detectives were handling the investigation.

Fullerton police have been under scrutiny since the death of a homeless, mentally ill man who was beaten during a confrontation last year. The beating of Kelly Thomas sparked a political firestorm and led to criminal charges against two former officers.

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