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California cops shoot and kill kidnapped teen girl as she runs toward them

Salon 9/28/2022 Samaa Khullar

Fontana police shooting © Provided by Salon Fontana police shooting

Law enforcement vehicles surrounded the vehicle driven by Anthony John Graziano, 45, following a gun battle with the man on the 15 freeway in Victorville Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022. Will Lester/MediaNews Group/Inland Valley Daily Bulletin via Getty Images

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story stated that kidnapping victim Savannah Graziano was shot and killed by police when running toward them seeking protection. Savannah Graziano's reason for running to the police has not been confirmed. The story has been updated.

A 15-year-old California girl who was at the center of an Amber Alert was shot and killed on Tuesday by police officers when she ran toward them. 

After Anthony Graziano, 45, shot his wife in what police are calling an act of domestic violence, authorities sent an Amber Alert out on Monday warning that he had kidnapped his teenage daughter, Savannah, and was on the run.

Graziano killed his estranged wife, 45-year-old Tracy Martinez, near a Fontana elementary school, police said. The area was locked down and he fled the scene with Savannah.

The next morning, a witness spotted Graziano's Nissan pickup truck and notified the police, which led to a chase and shootout on the 15 Freeway in Victorville around 11:15 a.m.

The deputies who responded to the call said that Graziano was shooting at them "constantly" through his rearview window and police responded with gunfire of their own.

Graziano was killed in the shootout as was his daughter, whom the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department claimed was in "tactical gear."

Savannah had attempted to flee the car during the chaos and ran toward deputies. However, she was shot in the firefight and was later transported to a hospital where she was pronounced dead around noon.

During a Tuesday afternoon news conference, San Bernardino County Sheriff Shannon Dicus said the investigation is in its beginning stages and emphasized that all information is preliminary. 

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Dicus did not confirm which individual fired the shot that ultimately killed Savannah and added that there were "indications" that she had been involved in parts of the shooting and may have "[fired] back at the deputies." 

Dicus shared that they are still trying to comb through details, and it will take at least a day before more information is provided, but confirmed that "both Anthony Graziano and Savannah are deceased."

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