OAKLAND (KRON) — Police say a woman shot and killed by Emeryville Police on Tuesday was pointing a revolver at a man pulling into a storage facility parking lot.
Russ Whitehead, 65, was cleaning glass out of his car Wednesday morning after police gunfire shattered all of the windows of his Ford Focus when they shot the woman.
Whitehead says he was pulling into the Extra Space Storage facility at 3406 Hollis St., just over Oakland’s border with Emeryville, early Tuesday afternoon when he heard a woman screaming frantically behind him.
Whitehead says he couldn’t see her well as she was coming behind him, and couldn’t make out what she was yelling. His partner was in a separate car directly behind him. He says she approached his partner and pointed the revolver at his face.
His partner threw the car in reverse and drove away from the woman, but Whitehead was blocked from fleeing that way. He then heard police arrive and yell commands at the woman.
“The next thing I know there were bullets flying and there were bullets going through my car,” Whitehead said. He ducked to the floor of the car, suffering only some minor scrapes from the shattered glass.
Emeryville police said they found the woman while investigating reports at 12:35 p.m. of a theft at a shopping center in the 3800 block of Hollis Street, where a Home Depot is located.
The caller reported that the combative theft suspect was armed. Police said when they found the woman just over the Oakland border, she was carrying a gun and they opened fire.
Police would not say whether the woman fired any shots or if she pointed the gun at the officers. They also did not disclose how many officers opened fire or how many shots they fired.
The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.
Just as after the recent deaths of Michael Brown by a Ferguson, Missouri, police officer and Eric Garner by a New York police officer have drawn protests, about 100 protesters gathered at the scene of the police
shooting Tuesday night.
Whitehead said as he returned to pick up his car from the storage facility, he was confronted by the protesters, some of whom yelled threats and profanity at him and would not allow him to move his car.
The protesters later marched into Emeryville, where they smashed the windows of the Home Depot, according to police.
The shooting is being investigated by the Oakland police homicide section, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office and Emeryville police.