SANTA ROSA (CBS SF) — Investigators Wednesday afternoon released new details about the shooting death of a 13-year-old boy by Sonoma County sheriff’s deputies south of Santa Rosa on Tuesday afternoon.
Andy Lopez Cruz was carrying a fake gun that resembled an assault rifle along Moorland Avenue north of West Robles Avenue around 3:15 p.m. when two deputies pulled over to confront him, according to Lt. Paul Henry of the Santa Rosa Police Department, which is handling the investigation.
Andy was carrying the gun in his left hand at his side as he was walking, Henry said. At a news conference Wednesday afternoon, Henry displayed the gun Andy was carrying alongside a real AK-47 assault rifle.
Andy’s gun had a thinner barrel that was 6 to 8 inches shorter than the real rifle and was colored differently but was missing the orange plastic tip that typical differentiates a fake gun from a real one.
After spotting Andy and stopping their marked patrol car with the top rotating lights activated about 20 to 30 feet from him, the deputies called for backup, sheltered behind the open car door and ordered Andy to “put the gun down,” Henry said.
Andy, wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt and shorts, was walking with his back to the two deputies. After they yelled the order, he started turning around and as he did one of the deputies said he saw the barrel of the gun rising and turning toward him, according to Henry.
The deputy, fearing for his safety and knowing that style of gun could penetrate body armor, the metal exterior of the patrol car and the walls of the houses nearby, fired several rounds at Andy, striking him at least once, Henry said.
Andy immediately fell to the ground. The deputies approached him and handcuffed him and realized he was unresponsive. They then began life-saving measures and called for medical assistance, Henry said.
Andy was pronounced dead at the scene.