Man killed by Tahoe police
March 24, 2003
Responding to a domestic violence call, South Lake Tahoe police on Sunday fatally shot a 30-year-old man inside an Alameda Avenue home after the man reportedly pointed a gun at them.
During a preliminary investigation, the gun wielded by the man turned out to be a replica .45-caliber BB gun, said South Lake Tahoe Police Sgt. Les Scott. Both officers involved, Sgt. Terry Daniels and Ofc. Brodie Seagrave, have been placed on paid administrative leave.
At 2:44 p.m., a call came in to police dispatch reporting a domestic disturbance in the 700 block of Alameda Ave. According to the reporting party, a male and female were heard fighting and items breaking inside the home.
The two officers were dispatched to the scene and arrived at 2:53 p.m., Scott said. They made contact at the door with Karen Cotz, 34, of South Lake Tahoe. Prior to being given entry, officers observed a male subject walking from the front portion of the residence to the rear. He reappeared shortly holding a gun in his hand, Scott said.
“The officers drew their weapons and ordered the male subject to drop his gun. Instead, the male subject raised the gun and pointed it at the officers,” Scott said. “At that point, shots were fired by the officers.”
The amount of shots fired is still under investigation, Scott said.
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Neighbors who lived nearby but declined to give their names said they heard between one to six shots fired.
The home is a duplex, with one side occupied by Cotz and the victim and the other side by two adult men, neighbors said.
One neighbor, who said she did not hear the gunshots, did say that she had heard the couple fighting on several occasions.
The last fatal shooting involving a police officer happened on Jan. 29, 1997 when Peter Scott Richards, 27, drew a gun and shot at police officers on Johnson Boulevard. Officers fatally shot Richards during the incident, which stemmed from a domestic violence call the day before.
The incident is under investigation by the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department and the South Lake Tahoe Police Department.
The South Lake Tahoe Police Department is asking that anyone with additional details regarding the case to contact the police at (530) 542-6100.
Jeff Munson can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org