After speaking to a dispatcher for just over one minute, a 52-year-old man fatally shot himself in the parking lot of the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station at approximately 10:05 p.m. on Saturday.
As of Wednesday, the man had not been publicly identified, pending the notification of next of kin. Authorities have described him only as a Caucasian male who resided in West Hollywood.
Lt. Sergio Aloma, of the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station, said the man called the department through one of its business lines. The dispatcher spent the majority of the phone call trying to find the man’s location and talk him out of committing suicide, but the man wasn’t engaging in dialogue, he said.
“I wish it wouldn’t have happened, but unfortunately it did,” Aloma added.
He said the department does not know why the man shot himself. Aloma said a note was found on his person, but it only listed the contact information for a relative. During the conversation, the man thanked the dispatcher for his concern about the man’s welfare, the lieutenant said.
Aloma said deputies believe that the man had no intention of harming anyone else.
“We have absolutely no indication or information that [harming others] was part of his plan, if you will,” he said, adding that the individual did not seem to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. “In fact, we believe the only connection to the sheriff’s station was what he said to the dispatcher during his call — that he wanted professionals to find him and not neighbors or citizens.”
The man fired one shot into his upper body, and when deputies responded shortly thereafter, he was pronounced dead at the scene, Aloma said. He said no one inside the sheriff’s station heard the shot, but a handgun was recovered in the parking lot.
The department’s Homicide Bureau is handling the case.
Aloma said he does not know of any similar incidents occurring at the station since he began working in West Hollywood in 1989. He asked individuals who are contemplating suicide to reach out for support.
“There’s always alternatives and there’s help out there, and we’re part of that process,” Aloma added.
If residents feel that they need help, they can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800)273-TALK.
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