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LAPD officers shoot, kill armed man in Echo Park [Updated]

September 28, 2010 |  7:08 pm

Map shows location of Tuesday's fatal police shooting and 69 other homicides within two miles of the location since January 2007 Click to learn more on The Times' interactive Homicide Report Los Angeles police Tuesday afternoon shot and killed a heavily armed man who confronted officers during a traffic stop.

Shortly after 4:30 p.m., three officers patrolling the city’s Echo Park neighborhood came upon a suspicious-looking vehicle. A check of its license plate revealed that the car had been reported stolen and the suspected thief was thought to be armed and dangerous, said LAPD Assistant Chief Earl Paysinger.

The officers stopped the car in the 1600 block of Temple Street, where the suspect exited and turned toward the officers; he was armed with an AK-47 assault rifle or similar weapon, Paysinger said. Two officers opened fire, killing the man, he said.

Paysinger said that along with the rifle, a handgun was discovered in the man’s back pocket.

It was not immediately known if the suspect fired on the officers, Paysinger said, and investigators were working to determine details of the pursuit and the shooting.

Aerial news photographs appeared to show a black rifle on the ground next to the suspect’s body, which had been lifted by officials onto a gurney and covered with a sheet.

The name of the dead man has not been released.

The shooting occurred about a mile from the scene of another fatal shooting by police earlier this month. That incident, in which a man reportedly was armed with a knife and threatening passersby, sparked several days of protests and violent skirmishes between police and demonstrators.

Paysinger said there were no signs of unrest by onlookers Tuesday.

[Updated at 8:45 p.m.: At least 139 people in Los Angeles County have been killed by law enforcement officers since January 2007, according to coroner's data collected by The Times. Learn more about those cases in The Times' Homicide Report.]

-- Joel Rubin