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Amputee shot by police had battled mental illness

SHARE Amputee shot by police had battled mental illness

HOUSTON — A double amputee who was fatally shot by a Houston police officer had a long history of mental illness and spent much of the past decade successfully running away from residential care facilities.

But recently, the 45-year-old seemed to have settled into some stability. He was staying at a care facility, taking his medications and going to his doctor's appointments.

His criminal and medical history didn't seem to indicate violent tendencies. But the worst of his mental illness burst forth this past weekend when he wouldn't calm down after demanding cigarettes and soda.

Houston police said one officer who went to the home fatally shot Claunch after he threatened officers with a shiny object. The object turned out to be a pen. The FBI is now monitoring the shooting investigation.