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Police: San Mateo Man Fired on Officers Before He Was Killed

Robert Caron "pointed a handgun directly at the officers and fired upon them," chief says.

Robert Caron, the man shot and killed by officers on Oak Street this morning, had been acting irrationally and fired on police with a .38-caliber handgun before he was struck down, according to San Mateo police.

"The suspect pointed a handgun directly at the officers and fired upon them," said San Mateo police Chief Susan Manheimer, speaking during a press conference at police headquarters. "Officers returned fire as the suspect fled to his backyard. An officer encountered the armed suspect and fired one shot, striking the suspect and ending the immediate threat.”

Police said Caron, 35, had been to the that morning and was upset over an issue regarding his medication. His mother told reporters that he was schizophrenic, and Renado McGlown, a longtime friend of Caron's, told Patch that "he was on a lot of medication."

McGlown said he had spoken to Caron only an hour or two before the shooting, and couldn't understand how such a tragedy had occurred given his friend's upbeat mood.

“He was in a good mood" when they talked on the phone between 8:30 and 9 a.m., McGlown said. "He wasn’t suicidal at all when I talked to him, he was in a good mood and we were talking about him coming down to my place.”

Not long after that call, between 10:30 and 11 a.m. on the 1500 block of Oak Street, Caron was shot and killed by officers.

McGlown had said that Caron possessed a number of "realistic-looking" BB guns, and wondered if police had mistaken one of those for a real gun. But McGlown also acknowledged that "He has a licensed handgun, and he keeps it in a lockbox on top of his safe." Police say they have recoved a .38 Smith & Wesson from the scene.

“I know the guy when he’s down and out, and his mindframe wasn’t there” Monday morning, said McGlown, a 32-year-old San Mateo native who now lives in the Sacramento area.

Although police said Caron has a history of threatening officers, McGlown disputed that claim, saying his friend "had no problem with police. He used to be a security guard.”

The shooting occurred only two blocks from , but police secured the area immediately afterward and no lockdown was put in place.

Belmont Patch editor Laura Dudnick contributed to this report.

Troy March 01, 2011 at 10:03 PM
My true condolences. I wish there was a way to keep this from happening.
Mary A March 02, 2011 at 07:08 AM
EXTREMELY SAD TO HEAR FOR ALL INVOLVED, THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS WITH FAMILY OF DECEASED AND ALSO WITH OFFICER WHO HAS TO LIVE WITH WHAT WAS OBVIOUSLY A DIFFICULT PREDICIMENT , CAN ONLY IMAGINE THE TURMOIL THE OFFICER(S) HAVE TO LIVE WITH WHEN FACED WITH THIS SIUTATION. NOT EASY TO HAVE TO LIVE WITH....
Anonymous March 02, 2011 at 10:07 PM
Zack, there is a way to keep this from happening. People who are schizophrenic should not be allowed to possess licensed handguns or other firearms. Police officers also need better training in the use of non-lethal alternatives when dealing with a mentally ill person. Finally, let's not be too quick to accept the official police version of what happened here. I hope an effort is made to examine this incident in full detail.
Zeki March 05, 2011 at 04:00 PM
I agree with almost everything you said with the exception of: "People who are schizophrenic should not be allowed to possess licensed handguns or other firearms." Where is the people with schizophrenia list to check against. Did you know he was not schizophrenic when he obtained firearms? People with mental illness do not walk around with T-shirts stating so. You might has well said "everyone should be rich and healthy". Impossible. As long as our health care system uses "pre existing conditions" against us and try's to find anyway possible not to help people this is just reality and only the police could have done something different. It is obvious that the official police version is very defensive and most likely has some inaccuracies. If the police knew him so well from his vast history of trouble with the law, then they would have known they could have just knocked on the front door and talked to his Mom who would have calmed Robert down.

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