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Shot California Man Pointed Water Nozzle at Officers

December 14, 2010  | 

Photo courtesy of Long Beach PD.

Long Beach (Calif.) Police officers fatally shot a man who had pointed a water nozzle at them that a neighbor described as a "six shooter" during a 911 call, according to the agency.

Douglas Zerby, 35, pointed the nozzle at officers who responded to his residence at 4:40 p.m. Sunday in the 5300 block of Ocean Boulevard. Two people inside the calling party's residence told police they could see a man on a porch landing with a gun.

Responding officers confirmed the subject appeared to be armed with a handgun, and positioned themselves so they could watch the suspect while waiting for additional officers, including the Air Support Unit and Mental Evaluation Team.

The officers did not immediately contact the subject to allow time for those resources to arrive and lock down the area, to prevent the subject from escaping the location while armed, according to the agency.

Officers believed the subject to be intoxicated and holding what appeared to be a handgun. As additional units were responding, the subject pointed what officers believed was a handgun at the apartment building.

While sitting down, Zerby used a two-handed pistol grip of the object and fully extended his arms like someone about to fire a handgun. When the subject pointed the object at one of the officers, two officers fired their weapons at the suspect, striking him in the torso multiple times.

Zerby actually had possession of a black pistol grip water nozzle with a metal tip.

Zerby's family reacted angrily, promising to file suit against the department. Mourners yelled "murder," and held signs with "Shoot First Ask Questions Later," reports the Los Angeles Times.

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