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John Winkler, a 30-year-old man who had recently worked as a production assistant, was mistakenly killed by Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department deputies who responded to an incident at a West Hollywood apartment complex on Monday.
LASD deputies were dispatched to a building on the 900 block of Palm Avenue after a call was made reporting “assault with a deadly weapon, man with a knife,” according to a sheriff’s department statement. The deputies mistook Winkler for the alleged assailant and he was fired upon as he rushed out the complex door.
“Winkler was similar to the description of the suspect and was wearing a black shirt. Believing Winkler was the assailant and the assault was ongoing and he would attack the entry team; three deputies fired their duty weapons at him,” the updated Thursday statement read. “Victim Winkler was struck by the gunfire and fell to the floor, and the male victim also collapsed; struck once by the gunfire.”
Winkler had recently worked as a production assistant on Comedy Central’s Tosh.0, filling in on the show for several days.
“Comedy Central and Tosh.0 extend their deepest condolences to the family of John Winkler,” the network said in a statement. “We only had the privilege of working with him for a short while and extend heartfelt sympathy to his family and friends during this tragic time.”
He died at a local hospital from a single gunshot wound, the LASD said. Two other victims received stab wounds during the incident and were hospitalized.
The stabbing suspect, named as Alexander McDonald, 27, is currently in custody and faces charges of murder, attempted murder and torture. His bail is currently set at $4 million.
News footage broadcast by local station KCAL 9 on Monday showed several police cars, a fire truck and an ambulance at the location.
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