SAN FRANCISCO - San Francisco police fatally shot a suspect who drove a Honda into the visa office the Chinese consulate late Monday afternoon, authorities said.
The incident unfolded at approximately 3:09 p.m. when an unidentified suspect drove their car into the visa office of the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China, located at Laguna Street and Geary Boulevard, according to SFPD Sgt. Kathryn Winters.
The car stopped inside the office's lobby.
Winters said that officers responded to the scene and made contact with the driver. During this encounter, an officer-involved shooting occurred, although Winters did not disclose the specific circumstances that led to officers' discharging their weapons.
The wounded suspect was taken to a local hospital where they later died.
Videos posted on the social media platform, X, show a blue Honda Civic that crashed through the front door of the consulate building.
One witness said even hours after the incident, he recalls the ordeal vividly.
"I was shaking. Very scared. Slightly traumatic," witness Tony Xin said. He said he was among the 20 people waiting to process their visa.
Winters noted that the police department is unable to provide further information as the investigation involves multiple agencies and jurisdictions.
Xin said he saw the driver dressed in a blue Polo shirt and gray jeans with blood on his head, holding two knives, standing by the Honda Civic. He said he saw a security guard trying to detain the driver. Xin and others ran out of the building through the damaged doorway.
"I heard a really loud bang. I thought it was gunshots. I looked to the left and there was smoke," Xin said. "I turned back and saw the guy take out a cross bow; one of those cross bow shooting things."
Xin said less than a minute after he got out, five police officers arrived, initially with their guns drawn and rushed into the building. He said they were later joined by more officers.
"I heard three to five gunshots. I don't remember exactly how many," Xin said.
"This is shocking. Living by the Chinese consulate, there's potentially things that could happen. Is this political or maybe he's angry his visa didn't go through. Was it just random?" said one San Francisco resident.
"There's a lot of things that could have went differently if he had a gun or explosives. Thankfully he didn't and I reflected on it afterwards."
Witnesses reported seeing a bloodied man being loaded into an ambulance and taken away from the scene. Other witnesses said they also heard multiple gunshots.
San Francisco police will hold a town hall within 10 days to provide an update on the department's investigation into the incident.
The Chinese consulate issued a statement following the crash and shooting that read in part: "Our Embassy severely condemns this violent attack and reserves the right to pursue responsibilities related to the incident. Our embassy has made solemn representations to the United States, demanding that the truth be quickly ascertained and dealt with seriously in accordance with the law,"