Charles Towns (2023)

From LEO Ratings
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Critical Incident Briefing

On January 22, 2023, Los Angeles County California Sheriff's Department deputies were called about a man trying to stab people with a "sharp metal object". Deputies Clarissa Prentice and Eliezer Morales located Towns and followed him. Towns stabbed a woman and attempted to stab another person, prompting deputies to shoot him. Towns died at the scene.[1]

The incident was captured on officers' body-worn cameras.

On March 6, 2023, Towns' sons filed a lawsuit against the officers and the current and former Sheriffs for negligence, wrongful death, and use of excessive force.[2]

The California Department of Justice will conduct an independent investigation of the shooting, which is required under state law for officer-involved shootings of unarmed individuals.[3]

Officers Involved


  1. Deputies fatally shoot armed suspect in Altadena, KCAL News, 2023-01-23
  2. Sophie Flay, Sons of man fatally shot by deputies in Altadena sue Los Angeles County, ABC 7, 2023-03-06
  3. Current Cases, State of California Department of Justice