Video Shows Police Fatally Shoot Man Who Officials Say Was Brandishing Knife Near Torrance Gym

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A man who allegedly brandished a knife in a Torrance strip mall parking lot of was shot and killed by responding officers on Friday morning, police said.

Around 8:45 a.m., officers were dispatched to the area of Planet Fitness, located in the 20000 block of Hawthorne Boulevard, after receiving a call regarding an individual armed with a knife, according to a Torrance Police Department news release.

When police arrived, the man allegedly refused to obey their commands, prompting officers to use less-than-lethal force, the release stated.

"Unfortunately that did not work. The individual advanced toward officers at which time an officer-involved shooting did occur," Torrance police Sgt. Ronald Harris told KTLA.

Officers attempted to perform life-saving measures on him, but the man died at the scene, Harris said.

It was unclear how much time elapsed between the police response and the shooting, but Harris indicated officers spent "an enormous amount of time trying to deescalate this individual."

A bystander's cellphone video captured a portion of the incident, including the shooting and the moments leading up to the gunfire.

At the start, the shirtless man can be seen kneeling on the pavement, facing multiple officers who are a short distance away and standing around several parked patrol vehicles. He appears agitated, waving one of his arms around and pointing a finger at police.

The footage shows what appears to be a bean bag round fired in the man's direction, and he stands up and starts jumping around. He then marches toward police, at which point he is shot.

The sergeant said he didn't have information about how many shots were fired, but at least five can be heard in the video.

Police have not yet identified him.

Investigators recovered "edged weapons" at the scene, according to the release. Harris later stated that two such objects were found.

The man apparently was carrying a backpack, and it appeared he also had a caged snake with him.

The shooting took place in the parking lot of a strip mall located near Hawthorne and Del Amo boulevards. A portion of the lot was cordoned off with yellow tape, and police said part of the center was closed amid the investigation.

"We're asking people to be flexible with us, this part of the mall is closed down because it's an active scene," Harris said.

No other details were immediately released.

The incident is under investigation, and anyone with information is encouraged to call the Police Department's Detective Division at 310-618-5570.

KTLA's Juan Flores contributed to this story.

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