FLORENCE (CBSLA.com) — A family was outraged Sunday after Los Angeles sheriff’s deputies shot and killed their loved one who was an alleged assault suspect.

According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, deputies of the Century Station learned of the shooting that occurred just before 7 p.m. Saturday in the 1100 block of 75th Street.

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When deputies arrived, they found a male adult victim with apparent stab wounds. The alleged victim — a friend and neighbor of the dead man’s —  was transported to a hospital for treatment of his injuries, however, his condition is unknown at this time.

He accused 28-year-old Johnny Martinez of allegedly stabbing him with a kitchen knife, officials said.

Deputies said when they tried to detain Martinez, he pulled out a knife. His family says he was unarmed.

Saturday evening, Martinez’ family spoke to KCAL9’s Cristy Fajardo. They told her they were demanding justice.

His family believes Martinez was having a schizophrenic break.

Four deputies first used a stun gun on Martinez and then proceeded to pepper spray him.

“The suspect continued to agress the deputies,” said Lt. Dave Coleman of the LA County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau.  “All four perceived a threat to themselves and others and fired several rounds.”

His family witnessed the incident and told deputies not to shoot because Martinez was mentally ill.

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“They wrongfully killed my brother,” Sonya Martinez said. “They ignored my dad’s plead. He said ‘he’s mentally ill, don’t hurt him’. They didn’t care. They went ahead and shot him.”

Martinez was pronounced dead at the scene.

Sonya told Fajardo, “It’s not fair, if they would have given my dad the chance to talk to him, he would be here right now.”

Martinez’ father, Roberto Martinez, witnessed the entire ordeal and disputes that his son made any aggressive moves towards the deputies.

In the past, he said he was always able to calm his son down even in the throes of mental illness.

No deputies were injured and the circumstances surrounding the shooting is being investigated.

On Sunday evening, a vigil was held for Martinez.

 

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