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Man shot to death by police was former member of department

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — An 88-year-old California man who was shot and killed by police over the weekend was a former police department employee who had been struggling with mental illness, officials said.

Robert Coleman died during the encounter with West Sacramento police officers early Saturday, the Yolo County Coroner’s Office said. Police officials said Coleman was armed with a handgun.

Coleman’s family told police he had been struggling with mental illness and had talked about suicide, the Sacramento Bee reported Monday.

Coleman worked for the department from the late 1990s until 2004 as a code enforcement officer and parking enforcement officer.

“We are all deeply saddened by this tragedy and ask that you keep the Coleman family in your thoughts,” the department said in a statement. “Mr. Coleman’s condition, although relevant, will not impact the investigative efforts to scrutinize the actions of the involved officers.”

An independent investigation was being led by the Davis Police Department in accordance with department protocols, the newspaper said.

Officers responded around 3 a.m. Saturday following reports of an armed man. Officers opened fire when the encountered a man with a gun, according to a department statement. The department didn’t immediately release additional details about the shooting.

No officers were hurt.

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