FRESNO, California (KSEE) – A man is dead following an officer-involved shooting near Downtown Fresno – after police say he used a car to smash into unmarked patrol vehicles Tuesday.
The incident began shortly after 12:30 p.m. at Hazelwood Boulevard and Ventura Avenue when members of the HEAT (Help Eliminate Auto Theft) task force attempted to stop a vehicle they say was stolen from the Fresno area.
Officers say the suspect then started using the vehicle as a deadly weapon when he struck several unmarked patrol vehicles, forcing two officers to open fire and shoot the suspect several times. The suspect was rushed to the hospital but died a short time later.
Investigators say they are unsure if the suspect was armed at the time. According to the Fresno County Sheriffs Office, one of their deputies and an officer with the CHP were the two who opened fire.
“Sometimes auto theft isn’t just a property crime, it becomes a violent and dangerous situation,” said Fresno County Assistant Sheriff John Zanoni.
The suspect has not been officially identified. Officers say he was with a female who was not seriously injured.
Fresno Police is managing the investigation.