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OPD officers kill two in attempt to stop gang-related incident

on May 19, 2011

This afternoon, the Oakland Police Department issued a press release stating that officers shot and killed two men at around 10:30 pm on Wednesday, May 18, during an attempt to prevent the occurrence of a violent, gang-related crime.

According to the OPD, the officers had been tipped that a violent crime was going to occur near the 3000 block of Curran Avenue in East Oakland. The officers attempted to stop a car containing three men believed to be suspects; two were armed and all fled the vehicle. Two of the men were shot during a resulting conflict with the officers. The third man and his firearm were later located by a helicopter using an infrared device; the man was subsequently arrested.

The two men shot by OPD officers were treated for their injuries, but both died. The OPD has not yet released their names or further details about the crime officers believe was in progress, except that to state that the department believes the incident was gang-related.

The Oakland Police Department Homicide Unit, Alameda County District Attorney’s Office and the Internal Affairs Division have opened investigations into this incident.

There have been four other officer-involved shootings this year. On January 29, OPD officers shot and killed 39-year-old Matthew Cicelski, who was harassing a resident in the Rockridge area, and attempted to break into a home while carrying what turned out to be a fake assault rifle.

On January 26, OPD officers shot and killed 19-year-old Martin Flenaugh, who confronted officers with multiple firearms after being involved in a car chase.

On January 22, an officer with the Oakland Unified School District police, which is separate from the Oakland Police Department, shot and killed 20-year-old Raheim Brown of San Francisco, after he allegedly attacked another officer with a screwdriver. Officers had approached Brown because he was sitting in an allegedly stolen car with the hazard lights on near Skyline High School, which was holding a dance.

In February, local organizations hosted a two day summit called the Oakland Tribunal to address officer-involved shootings, among other subjects relating to crime and public safety.

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