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Jose Mendez, 16
Los Angeles, California
February 06, 2016

Agencies: Los Angeles Police Department California LAPD

Last updated: 11 months ago

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According to the Los Angeles Police Dept. (LAPD), Mendez was driving a stolen vehicle when stopped at about 10:45pm on Feb. 6. Police said Mendez pulled into a residential driveway on 6th Street, west of Lorena Avenue, and that’s when he exited the vehicle and pointed a sawed-off shotgun at one of the officers.

Both officers immediately fired several rounds, fatally striking the suspect.

A loaded, 20-gauge shotgun with an illegally modified shortened barrel and altered stock was recovered at the scene, according to police.

According to a January 2017 report from, video from an apartment building across the street shows Jose Mendez pulling over into drive way and the LAPD quickly exiting police car and starting to fire at Mendez, who was still sitting and strapped with seat belt in car. 

“They should’ve hit him in a foot or an arm and then arrested him,” Rizo told EGP. “But I really don’t know what the police’s motive was for killing him,” she said.

Rizo, speaking in Spanish, told EGP it took authorities 12 hours to notify her of Jose’s death. One of Jose’s brothers broke the news over the phone to their father, Juan Mendez, who was working at the time.

The couple went to the Hollenbeck Police Station to get more information, she explained, but were only told the case is under investigation.

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August 2016 video shows police story incorrect