West Hollywood Sheriff’s Deputies accidentally shot and killed 30-year-old John Winkler while responding to a report of an assault with a deadly weapon Monday night. Winkler was recently hired by Comedy Central as a production assistant on Tosh.0. Winkler moved to L.A. six months ago from Washington to pursue a career in entertainment.
Deputies were responding to the call at a West Hollywood apartment complex looking for a man with a knife. They were directed to the apartment where the suspect was said to be.
According to the police report, “…the apartment door suddenly opened and a male victim came rushing out. He was covered in blood and bleeding profusely from the neck. Simultaneously, Victim Winkler ran out of the door, lunging at the back of the fleeing victim. Both ran directly at the deputies. Winkler was similar to the description of the suspect and was wearing a black shirt. Believing Winkler was the assailant and the assault was ongoing and he would attack the entry team; three deputies fired their duty weapons at him. Victim Winkler was struck by the gunfire and fell to the floor, and the male victim also collapsed; struck once by the gunfire.”
Moments later, Deputies realized that the suspect Alexander McDonald was still in the apartment, choking another victim. Police were able to subdue him and take him into custody.
Detectives later established that the Winkler and the other two victims were being held captive at knifepoint, and that “in a rage, the suspect began stabbing the men and fighting with them as the deputies arrived.”
Winkler was transported to a local hospital where he later died from a single gunshot wound.
The suspect, 27-year-old, Alexander McDonald is facing several charges including one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder and one count of torture.