Police Shoot Man Carrying Knife in Venice Outside Coffee Shop: LAPD, Witness

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An investigation was underway after police opened fire on an individual holding a knife Monday afternoon in Venice, according to LAPD and a witness.

A man was shot by police in the 600 block of Rose Avenue in Venice on July 13, 2015. (Credit: KTLA)

A man was shot by police in the 600 block of Rose Avenue in Venice on July 13, 2015. (Credit: KTLA)

Police initially responded to the area of Rose and Sixth avenues to a report of a man with a knife at around 2 p.m., Officer Rosario Herrera of the Los Angeles Police Department's Media Relations section said.

An employee of a nearby Groundwork Coffee shop who said he witnessed the shooting told KTLA the incident began when the man walked onto the store's patio carrying a bottle apparently filled with water and cigarette butts.

“We were outside and the man sat down on the patio, and just seemed fine at first, then … turned around and began vomiting," said the man, who did not provide his name.

He added the man had been drinking from a bottle full of "black water" that looked  to be filled with cigarette butts.

Although he was not working at the time, the witness contacted the store's manager, who came out and asked the man if he was OK. At that point, the man became “verbally aggressive” and started acting “belligerent,” according to the witness.

He began shouting, "Today, is the day I am going to die," a witness said.

“My friend saw him pull out a knife at some point,” he said, adding someone else then called 911.

Police arrived at the scene a short time later.

“They showed up, got out of the car, the two officers approached him and told him to surrender his knife, with guns drawn. One of them had a Taser and the other one had what appeared to be an actual gun," the witness stated.

"They ordered that suspect to drop that knife and comply, however he refused to do so and that's when the officer involved shooting occurred," said LAPD Sgt. Barry Montgomery.

The witness said the man then stood up and started walking toward them, at which point the officer with the Taser deployed the stun gun.

When the man continued walking in their direction, the officer shot at him two or three times, hitting him in his midsection, the witness said.

He said under the circumstances, he felt that the shooting had been “absolutely unnecessary.”

Herrera confirmed the shooting, but could not provide any information about the man's injuries or condition.

It was also not known if he was transported to a hospital.

The shooting was the second officer-involved shooting in Venice in a little more than two months. Back in early May, LAPD officers opened fire on 29-year-old Brendon Glenn near the boardwalk, killing the unarmed homeless man.

KTLA's Kennedy Ryan and Jennifer Thang contributed to this story.

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