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James Neal Tuggle, 29

James Tuggle, a 29-year-old black man, was shot and killed by Long Beach police officers Sunday, May 3, in the 1200 block of Cedar Avenue in Long Beach, according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office.

Tuggle, authorities said, had engaged Long Beach police in a running gun battle that began more than an hour after they first responded to a 2:30 a.m. call about a dispute between a man and a woman in the 1100 block of Chestnut Avenue. The officers left at that time after they were unable to determine if a crime had been committed, said Long Beach Police spokeswoman Lisa Massacani.

Police were called back to the residence about 3:45 a.m. on another report of a dispute and spent about an hour inside investigating. When they left the building, they were ambushed by a gunman, Massacani said. Officers returned fire, and the man, later identified as Tuggle, ran north on Chestnut Avenue before turning east onto 12th Street.

He hid near the mouth of an alley, firing multiple shots at an assisting patrol car that had just arrived on the scene, Massacani said.

As Tuggle started to move again, he was struck by police gunfire at least once. He was pronounced dead on Cedar Avenue, just north of 12th Street. No other injuries were reported and no residences were hit.

"We were just extremely lucky," Massacani said. "It wasn't like a standoff situation; it was very fluid."

Two handguns and a shotgun were recovered at the scene.

-- Corina Knoll

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