(photo by Ray Solano)

SUNSET PARK — Santa Monica police shot and killed a homeless man who was attempting to murder his ex-girlfriend, stabbing her repeatedly in the chest with a knife before two officers climbed through an apartment window and fired several shots, authorities said Wednesday.

The victim, a 40-year-old resident of Santa Monica, was rushed to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries, said SMPD Lt. Jay Trisler. She was reportedly in stable condition Thursday.

The suspect, identified by police as Frank Walter Johnson, 59, a transiennt, was pronounced dead at the scene, Trisler said.

A motive for the attack is not known at this time. Police are continuing to investigate, Trisler said.

The officers fired at least four shots around 6:47 p.m. Wednesday in the 2400 block of Ocean Park Boulevard. That’s where officers said they made contact with the victim’s boyfriend who told them that his girlfriend was being attacked by her ex, who was carrying a knife.

Officers raced to the apartment but could not gain entrance through the front door. The officers climbed through an adjacent window and saw the suspect on top of the victim with a knife in his hand, stabbing her several times in the chest, Trisler said.

Officers ordered the suspect to stop, but he ignored them. The two officers opened fire and shot the suspect dead.

Following the shooting, police closed Ocean Park Boulevard from 23rd Street to 25th Street for several hours, Trisler said.

Trisler said the officers involved were taken to the Public Safety Facility to be interviewed and may be placed on paid leave or restricted duty until the investigation is completed. The chief of police will make that determination, Trisler said.

The officers will go through a counseling session before they are put on full, active-duty.


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