The half-brother of Robert Fuller, a black man found hanged in a California park, has been shot dead by Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies.
Authorities say Terron Jammal Boone was being sought for suspected kidnapping, spousal assault and assault with a deadly weapon.
A statement issued by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department claims that when detectives tried to stop a car he was in, he opened the passenger door and began shooting.
They say a woman driving the car was struck by gunfire and was treated and released from a hospital, and that a 7-year-old girl in the car was not hurt.
They added that the woman in the car was not the accuser in the spousal assault case.
The shootout erupted on Wednesday afternoon in the desert community of Rosamond, north of Los Angeles, officials said.
Boone was identified by an attorney representing the family of Robert Fuller, a 24-year-old man who was found hanging from a tree in Palmdale last week.
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Officials say the death appeared to be a suicide but family members have disputed that.
Attorney Jamon Hicks said in a statement: “At this time, until we receive all of the information, the family and their legal team doesn’t have any further comment on this incident.
“The family respectfully asks that their privacy be respected.”
Boone had been charged in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Tuesday with assault with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment, domestic violence and criminal threats.
Fuller’s body was discovered last week in a park near Palmdale City Hall.
The county medical examiner-coroner’s office said he appeared to have killed himself, after a post-mortem was conducted on Friday.
His family believe he was not suicidal and the finding prompted an outcry.
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They have been joined by community members in calling for an independent investigation and post-mortem.
More than 1,000 people attended a protest and memorial on Saturday around the tree where Fuller’s body was found.
The city of Palmdale issued a statement in support of an independent inquiry.
Federal authorities said they would review local investigations into the hanging deaths of Fuller and of Malcolm Harsch, a 38-year-old homeless black man who was found hanging from a tree on May 31 in Victorville, a desert city in San Bernardino County east of Palmdale.
Although local authorities have said there is no evidence of foul play in either death, sheriffs have vowed to continue investigating.