VISALIA, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — A suspected bank robber in Visalia was shot and killed by a police officer during a traffic stop Wednesday, according to the Visalia Police Department.
The shooting occurred around 11:30 a.m. near Court Street and Beech Avenue. Officers say they were forced to fire multiple times when the suspect repeatedly raised his gun.
According to police, the man robbed the Tri-Counties Bank on Pinkham Street and was spotted leaving the scene. Officers pulled the suspect over, he got out of the vehicle he was in, and then moved a handgun in the direction of law enforcement.
According to police, the suspect was shot and fell. He then got back up again, and officers fired again. The suspect then moved the gun toward the officers a third time – and officers fired shots at him once again, ultimately killing him. Multiple attempts were made to encourage the suspect to drop the gun.
“Unfortunately the suspect armed himself and refused to drop the weapon,” said Visalia Police Chief Jason Salazar. “So while it’s tragic I’m thankful that the officers weren’t hurt I’m thankful that nobody else in our community was hurt and good work by them getting the suspect into custody.”
The suspect was not officially identified. Tulare County Sheriff’s Office will be managing the officer involved shooting investigation.