Maywood family says grandfather was mistakenly killed by LASD deputies

A Maywood family is grieving the loss of Miguel Lopez, who was shot and killed by Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Deputies last month. Now, the family is planning to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the deputies involved in the shooting.

The shooting happened around 5:30 a.m., the morning of Jan. 26. That morning, deputies were serving a search warrant at the family home in the 6100 block of Clarkson Avenue.

"I thought they were like burglars who were trying to break into the house," said Luz Lopez, Miguel Lopez's widow.

According to Lopez family attorney Matthew Mullhofer, deputies "were investigating an incident that happened in October 2022, where there was a shooting, and they were trying to find any witnesses or suspects as to that shooting in October," and deputies believed there was a computer in the home that would have information. 

Mullhofer said deputies got a judge to sign off on a nighttime or early morning search warrant, often reserved for catching more dangerous suspects.

Luz Lopez was getting ready for work when the deputies arrived.

"I saw three guys trying to cut off the lock and I asked them, ‘What are you doing,’" Luz Lopez said. She said that deputies never identified themselves and did not say they had a warrant. The LASD said deputies "made announcements demanding entry" into the home.

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That's when Miguel Lopez came to the door with a gun. According to the LASD, "deputies attempted to de-escalate the situation by explaining to him that he was not the focus of their presence at the location."

Both Mullhofer and the LASD said that Miguel Lopez had his gun pointed at the ceiling when he came to the door. Mullhofer said that when Miguel Lopez realized what was going on, he lowered the weapon, and that's when he was shot. The LASD said Miguel Lopez was shot when he pointed the gun at deputies.

Miguel Lopez was hit by multiple gunshots and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said it's declined to press charges in this case, however Mullhofer said he plans to file a wrongful death suit against the deputies involved in Miguel Lopez's death.

The Lopez family has established a GoFundMe campaign to help with expenses while they mourn who they called "a family man, a gentleman, and a protector."