A man who was shot and killed by local authorities has been identified as a local rapper who goes by the name Almighty Aziz.
A man who was shot and killed by local authorities in Santa Clara, California this past weekend Saturday night (Apr. 5) has now been identified as a rapper who goes by the name Almighty Aziz.
According to San Jose Mercury News, Aziz, born Aziz Howard Raqmond James, 24, stabbed a man during an argument at a party and then broke into a house next door, entered the house by crashing through its window, and then, after being confronted at the neighboring house by a friend, stabbed the friend in the torso with a weapon that was described as a "large folding knife."
When police arrived, Aziz was in the back bedroom of the second house and after Police tried negotiating with the rapper, but after no success, sent in a police dog German Shepherd named Ares, according to Lt. Mike Sellers.
According to Sellers, Aziz allegedly stabbed Ares nearly severing the dog's ear along with slicing the torso and back area of the dog's neck.
Aziz was later shot and killed after a confrontation with the police officers.
The two police officers, Scott Fitzgerald, a 16-year veteran of the force, and Troy Johnsen, 8 years on the force, who shot Aziz were put on administrative leave.
According to his MySpace page, Aziz (born Aziz Howard Raqmond James) was scheduled to open shows for Houston rapper "Devin The Dude" later this April and in June with Russian pop duo t.A.T.u., who were expected to make their first scheduled appearance in the U.S. with rapper Aziz at Club Avalon in Santa Clara.
Aziz Howard Raqmond James, grew up in Watsonville and Aptos, and was considered a rising star in the Bay Area hip-hop community.
Relatives and colleagues are now questioning whether police did everything they could to defuse the situation before using deadly force and are planning to lodge a protest and complaint against Santa Clara police for their handling of the situation.
James' brother, Howard James III, a Santa Cruz drug and alcohol counselor, said he can't believe his younger brother and sidekick is gone. "We went everywhere together," Howard James said. "My parents are devastated. He was their baby. I just don't think police did everything they could have. Why didn't they even try to talk to him, at least over a phone? He wanted their help."
Aziz's death marked the first officer-involved fatal shooting in Santa Clara since 2005.