Police say boy with replica gun killed by officer in Arizona

Police in Maricopa County, Arizona, are launching an investigation after an officer shot and killed a teenage boy carrying a replica gun following a chase.

The Associated Press reports that police say the 14-year-old boy was running from officers at the scene of a burglary and was shot and killed after they say he turned toward the officers and was perceived as a threat. Police say he had a replica 1911 airsoft gun.

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The shooting was reportedly captured on police body cam, though a request for the footage by the AP was not immediately returned. Police say all officer-involved shootings in the district are automatically investigated.

"As with all officer-involved shootings, we will conduct a thorough investigation in conjunction with the Maricopa County Attorney's Office," read a Friday news release.

The boy's mother, Sandra Gonzalez, told a local ABC News affiliate through an interpreter that she would not allow law enforcement to tarnish her son's reputation with false accusations.

“If they want to tarnish my son, they are wrong," Gonzalez said, according to ABC 11.

“Apart from the fact that they killed him, they want to destroy him,” she added. “No. I won’t allow it, I want justice.”

Tempe's Mayor Mark Mitchell (D) said in a statement obtained by ABC that he was confident in the Tempe Police Department's ability to conduct a fair investigation into the shooting.

"It is because of my confidence in their devotion and professionalism as a department that I expect the current, active investigation into this shooting to be conducted thoroughly, transparently and as rapidly as is possible," Mitchell said.