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Man killed during confrontation with Oakland police, BART officers

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Oakland police shoot armed suspect
  • Officers were responding to a report of an armed man near the Fruitvale BART station
  • Police tried Tasering the man twice, but were unable to subdue him
  • The man turned on them with a knife, and police opened fire
  • The shooting is under investigation

(CNN) -- A man was shot and killed Saturday in Oakland, California, during a confrontation with Bay Area Rapid Transit officers and Oakland police, police spokesman Jeff Thomason said.

The incident occurred after Oakland police received a call about 8:15 a.m. (11:15 a.m. ET) of an armed man walking toward the Fruitvale BART station, according to Thomason. Police notified BART officers, who also responded.

BART officers were the first to reach the suspect, described as a Hispanic male between 30 and 40 years old, Thomason said. The BART officers chased the man from the station to the street, where Oakland police joined in the pursuit over four blocks in the Fruitvale area.

Thomason said Oakland police tried to Taser the man twice, but to no effect. The man, armed with two knives, then attempted to charge at one of the officers, a police statement said.

Multiple officers opened fire, killing him, the statement said.

The man has not yet been identified, Thomason said.

The shooting is under investigation by the Oakland police homicide unit, internal affairs and the Alameda County district attorney.

"Anytime there is a loss of life, it is a matter of great concern and sadness for us all," Oakland Mayor Ronald Dellums said in a statement. "It is extremely important that we as a community continue to work together in order to provide a safe and secure environment. Therefore, a thorough investigation of the circumstances surrounding this death has begun."

BART police have also opened a separate, parallel investigation.

The incident comes more than a week after a former BART police officer was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the 2009 shooting death of an unarmed black man on a train platform at the Fruitvale station.

The January 1, 2009, shooting of 22-year-old Oscar Grant was captured on a bystander's cell-phone video camera. The video was widely circulated on the Internet and on news broadcasts, and it spurred several protests in and around Oakland.

The video showed former officer Johannes Mehserle pulling his gun and fatally shooting Grant in the back as another officer knelt on the unarmed man.

Mehserle and other Bay Area Rapid Transit police had been called to the Fruitvale station after passengers complained about fights on a train. Officers pulled several men, including Grant, off the train when it arrived at Fruitvale.