Calif. sheriff’s deputies shoot, kill 13-year-old

Deputies Shoot 13 Year Old

This image, released by the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department, shows a replica gun that was being carried by a 13-year-old boy in Santa Rosa, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013. Two Sonoma County deputies saw the boy walking with the replica assault weapon at about 3 p.m. local time Tuesday in Santa Rosa. Lt. Dennis O’Leary says they repeatedly ordered him to drop what appeared to be a rifle before firing several rounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene. (AP Photo/Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department)

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (AP) — Police in California say a 13-year-old boy who was killed by sheriff’s deputies raised a pellet gun that looked like a high-powered rifle before sheriff’s deputies opened fire.

Santa Rosa police said Wednesday that the deputies were on patrol Tuesday when they spotted the boy with the gun and repeatedly asked him to lower it. Instead, he raised it in their direction.

After shooting the teen, the Sonoma County deputies found that the gun was a replica that looked similar to a real AK-47 assault rifle.

The boy, Andy Lopez, is described as a popular eighth-grade student who played trumpet in his school band.

Some residents of Santa Rosa, about 50 miles northwest of San Francisco, wonder whether the deputies acted appropriately when they decided to fire on such a young person.

Sheriff Steve Freitas said in a statement that the shooting was a “tragedy.”

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