|From a neighbor's back yard, one can see the patio area where police shot an armed man Thursday night.|
No one who answered their door this afternoon knew the full name of the 66-year-old man, who has not yet been identified by the Coroner's Office. The only neighbor who seemed to have any kind of relationship with him said she knew him only by his first name, John, and that he was renting the house in the 27000 block of Medford Way in the Sun City senior community.
"He was really despondent over the divorce," said Pauline Cramer, who lives down the street from the house where the shooting took place. "He came by one day crying and saying, 'I might as well take my own life.' I told him he needed to think hard about his life."
Cramer said the last time she spoke to the man was about two weeks ago. She said they would often pass when walking their dogs.
"He'd go by and wave," she said. "I thought everything was finally going OK."
Other neighbors said they had limited contact with the man. They said they rarely saw him unless he was pulling out of the driveway in his car.
"I was out picking weeds one day and he was outside watering," Williams said. "We talked for just a bit. He said, "I haven't been feeling good. My wife left me.' I've heard people make the comment that he just seemed lonely."
Many residents on the block were home when they saw police surrounding the house about 5 p.m. The first sign of trouble for some was the sound of a helicopter hovering overhead, with an officer shouting over the loudspeaker.
Williams said he heard commotion and looked out his front door to see several police vehicles pulling up in front of his next-door neighbor's house and officers pointing weapons at that house. He said an officer saw him and told him to go back inside.
"All I heard before I closed the door was an officer shouting, 'We can get you help,' " Williams said.
"I went back out and looked over there," Williams said. "I saw a circle of officers standing around the patio. They appeared to be pointing their guns down at someone."
Williams said he never saw the man before the shooting nor the body afterward.
When a reporter approached the residence where the shooting occurred, two individuals were hosing down the patio and removing patio furniture. They said they did not live there and had no comment. Soon, a man came out the front door and asked the reporter to leave.
"You don't ever hear things like this around here," said another neighbor, who asked that her name not be used. "It's a pretty secure place. When we moved here, I joked with my husband that they roll up the sidewalks at 6 o'clock."
The neighbor said she assumed the man wasn't working because he always seemed to be at home. She didn't notice visitors coming by.
"It's very quiet around here," said Norma Dawson, who lives across the street. "I've lived here eight years. You don't hardly hear a dog barking."
According to a report from the Menifee Police and Riverside County Sheriff's Department, officers responded to the report of a suicidal subject at 4:51 p.m. Thursday. It is not clear who placed the call. After confronting the subject in the back yard, officers fired upon the subject when he refused to put down his weapon and pointed it at them. He died on scene.
No officers were injured. Per department policy, the involved officers will be placed on paid administrative leave.
|Police blocked off the street Thursday as police began their investigation at Medford Way and Harrisburg Drive.|