Man Shot, Killed by Homeowner "Would Never Hurt a Fly": Friends

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Friends of a man shot and killed by a homeowner during a suspected home invasion say he was not the type of person to break into homes. Hetty Chang reports for NBC4 News at 5 p.m. from Long Beach Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. (Published Monday, Aug 11, 2014)

    An intruder shot and killed by a Long Beach homeowner early Sunday morning was being mourned by a tight-knit arts community Monday.

    The coroner's office identified the man as 29-year-old Ryan Anderson of Long Beach.

    "He was one of us," said Rio Ponce, a friend of Anderson’s. "It shouldn't have happened."

    Friends wrote messages in chalk on a large chalkboard displayed on the side of a business on 4th Street, a corridor frequented by Anderson and his friends.

    According to friends, Anderson was celebrating a friend's birthday and bar-hopping Saturday. He was last seen leaving the V Room Bar at approximately 2 a.m. Sunday morning, according to workers at the bar.

    Just after 3 a.m., police responded to a report of a residential burglary in progress with an intruder inside the home in the 2800 block of 3rd Steet, according to a news release from the Long Beach Police Department.

    Prior to the officers’ arrival, the person who called said the suspect had been shot inside the home.

    Police said Anderson was found in possession of property belonging to the homeowner.

    But friends of Anderson, an artist and photographer, describe him as a mild-mannered man who "would never hurt a fly."

    "I know 100 percent, I bet my life on it, he would never do that," said Tarra Riggi, of the allegations that Anderson scaled a wall and broke a window to access the home. "I think he just had a late night and went into the wrong house - it was just a horrific accident."

    Anderson, friends said, lived in a back house less than half a mile from the home where he was shot and killed.

    While police said crime, including property crimes, is down in the East Division of the Long Beach Police Department, neighbors said there has been a rash of break-ins recently.

    "Since the break-ins have started, we've definitely taken precautions," said Kelsey Duckett, who lives in the Bluff Heights neighborhood. "We're locking both bolts on the inside and outside, we don't leave our windows open anymore."

    Police had not connected Anderson to other crimes in the area and there was no indication there was any connection between him and the residents of the home, according to police.

    The Los Angeles District Attorney's office is tasked with deciding whether the homeowner would face any charges.

    The homeowner, according to neighbors, was staying at a hotel.

    Anderson's friends were planning a vigil for him Monday evening.

    Anyone with information on the case was asked to call Long Beach police at 562-570-7244.

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