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Man killed by police on freeway claimed gun but didn't have one

The man fatally shot by Los Angeles police at the end of a televised pursuit on the 101 Freeway told a 911 dispatcher that he was armed and ready to use his weapon, police officials said.

Despite those claims, police said that they did not recover a gun from the scene.

The pursuit began about 9:45 p.m. near Plummer Street and Shirley Avenue in Woodland Hills after 19-year-old Abdul Arian refused to pull over when police tried to stop him for erratic driving.

After a pursuit through city streets and onto the Ventura Freeway, Arian finally stopped in the middle of traffic. He jumped out of his car, ran, and assumed what police called a "shooting stance" and appearing to wield a weapon. Sources familiar with the investigation who were not authorized to speak publicly said it was a cellphone.

Officers fired dozens of rounds, killing Arian, police said.

Officials released a partial transcript of the 911 call that Arian made from the car. 

"I have a gun," Arian said.

"I've been arrested before for possession of destructive devices, I'm not afraid of the cops."

He also said: "If they pull their guns, I'm going to have to pull my gun out on them."

According to a news release, the dispatcher pleaded with Arian to surrender peacefully, saying, "I don't want you to hurt yourself."

Arian responded with expletives and a threat: "[Expletive] these police, they're going to get hurt."

Police have not released the entire transcript or recording of the 911 call.

The teen's uncle, Hamed Arian, told KTLA-TV his nephew was not armed.

He said his nephew was coming home from the gym when the incident began and was afraid of police.

"He was always afraid of cops," Hamed Arian said. "For some reason, he was always afraid of getting pulled  over by cops. "

"We are all devastated," his uncle said. "We lost a young man who was a really good kid."

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-- Andrew Blankstein and Thomas Curwen

 
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