- El Cajon Police Department
Protesters gathered in the San Diego area on Tuesday after a black man was fatally shot by the police.
The shooting happened in the city of El Cajon, about 16 miles northeast of San Diego.
El Cajon Police Department said officers were responding to reports of a man acting erratically. In a press release, the department said the man, described as an African-American in his 30s, was “walking in traffic.”
Local news outlets cited family members who identified the man as Alfred Olango.
The police said Olango kept one hand in his pocket as two officers tried to detain him.
“At one point, the subject rapidly drew an object from his front pants pocket, placed both hands together, and extended them rapidly toward the officer taking up what appeared to be a shooting stance,” the police department’s press release said.
The department published an image captured from video obtained from a witness. The image appears to show the confrontation between the officers and Olango.
One of the responding officers deployed a “less lethal electronic control device,” the police said. Another officer fired several shots from his service weapon, hitting Olango, who died of his injuries at a hospital.
Demonstrators gathered at the scene, chanting and criticizing the way the police handled the situation.
One man said he was driving out of a nearby apartment building as the incident unfolded, according to a report from The San Diego Union-Tribune. Michael Ray Rodriguez said an officer opened fire in a matter of seconds.
“[The officer] let go of the trigger and shot him again and again,” Rodriguez said, adding that he heard five shots, according to The Union-Tribune.
Investigators were on site for several hours before the police officially addressed the incident in a late-night news conference.
A department spokesman urged the public to remain calm and said the agency planned to be “open and transparent” during the investigation.
El Cajon police do not have body cameras, The Union-Tribune reported. Lt. Rob Ransweiler of the police department told the newspaper the department recently completed a pilot program with body cameras and ordered them.
“The equipment has not been delivered,” Ransweiler said.
The shooting follows weeks of demonstrations after black men were fatally shot by the police in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and in Charlotte, North Carolina, cases that have reignited a historically fraught discussion about police relations, specifically in communities of color.
At least 715 people have been fatally shot by the police this year, according to data compiled by The Washington Post.