Late Sunday night (actually 12:11 a.m. on Monday, September 4), Santa Monica Police responded to the 2000 block of Wilshire Blvd. regarding a large fight. When officers arrived, a citizen said that one subject at the location was armed with a handgun. Officers attempted to detain the man, but he fled on foot, and the officers gave chase. Lt. Frank Fabrega, SMPD spokesman, said the man “began to turn toward the officers, and the officers could see that he was holding a handgun in his hand.”
“Officers fearing for their safety shot the suspect,” Fabrega said. Santa Monica Fire Paramedics responded and pronounced the man dead at the scene. “A handgun was located near the suspect,” said police.
The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office identified the man as Christopher Lamont Hunter, 21, of Los Angeles. A coroner’s spokesman told the Mirror that an autopsy might be performed before the end of the week.
Santa Monica Police reported that an independent investigation will be conducted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. This is the first officer-involved fatal shooting for the Santa Monica Police Department since the February 9, 2006 death in Venice of a suspect after an armed robbery/carjacking incident at Michigan Ave. and 10th St.
Anyone having any information regarding this incident is encouraged to call the Santa Monica Police Department Robbery Homicide Unit at 310.458.8426.