SAN JOSE, Calif. - San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia said a man shot and killed by officers over the weekend, pulled a gun on police during a traffic stop.
At a Tuesday afternoon news conference, Garcia said the suspect was an armed felon, wanted an outstanding warrant. He was tased to no effect, before being shot once and then died at the scene.
Garcia said the suspect did not comply with officer’s requests to leave a vehicle and tried to grab a second officer’s gun during a struggle.
The incident happened Saturday afternoon and forced the partial closure of southbound Highway 85 in an area where San Jose, Saratoga, and Los Gatos converge.
One officer involved opened fire north of Winchester Boulevard in the middle of a traffic stop. Investigators said it happened after the suspect, who was a passenger in the car, reached for his waistband and pulled out a handgun when an officer tried to get him out of a vehicle.
The coroner’s office has not identified the man who was shot and killed. Police only said he was a 29-year-old Aptos resident. The man was pronounced dead at the scene. Police said he had a history of convictions for possession of illegal firearms.
The chief said the suspect had been under surveillance since an incident back in October where they say he backed his vehicle into a police car, leading to a chase.
Garcia expressed frustration, pointing out the suspect should not have had a gun, but did and it had an extended magazine.
“The most effective gun control we need to utilize in California is to enforce the laws that we already have on the books and stop treating illegal possession of a gun as a non-legal crime,” Garcia said.
Garcia said his heart goes out to the family of the suspect who was shot, including the father of the suspect, who was driving the Lexus SUV at the time of the incident. The father of the suspect was not injured. Police said he complied with officer’s requests to exit the vehicle.
The officer who fired his weapon has an 18-year-law enforcement history, 14 of which are with the San Jose Police Department. The district attorney’s office has placed the officer on paid-administrative leave.
SJPD homicide detectives are conducting a joint criminal investigation.