Man killed by police described as quiet, loner

Abdul Hamlan’s neighbors described him as a friendly but quiet man.

The 52-year-old military contractor walked his dogs every morning. He went to block party barbecues, but he wasn’t much for conversation, they said.

"We were friendly, but not friends. I don’t know that anybody really knew him," said a neighbor, David, who asked that his last name not be published.

David said he was smoking a cigarette in the backyard of his northwest valley home about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday when he heard several gunshots. He said he walked inside, locked the doors and called 911.

"I was in the military for 35 years," David said. "I knew that sound."

Hamlan was shot and killed in the garage of his home by a Las Vegas police officer Tuesday after reportedly pointing a handgun at the officer. Neighbors identified him, although authorities have not officially identified the dead man.

At an afternoon news conference near the scene, Capt. Patrick Neville, who oversees the department’s robbery and homicide bureau, said the man’s roommate made the initial 911 call.

The roommate, who was not identified, told police Hamlan was lying in the garage "having life issues" and was possibly suicidal.

Patrol officers arrived at 3916 Grand Meadow St., near Grand Canyon Drive and Alexander Road, and approached the open garage. Before they entered the garage, they saw a man holding a gun, Neville said.

Officers told the man to drop the weapon, but the man rolled onto his side and pointed the gun at one of the officers, who fired multiple shots. The name of the officer was not released.

Neville said he didn’t know whether the man spoke to the officers before he pointed the gun. The victim died later at a hospital.

Neville said the man suffered from "mental stress" issues, but he did not elaborate. Police earlier described the shooting as a possible "suicide by cop."

According to Hamlan’s Facebook page, he worked for JT3, a Las Vegas-based company that provides flight test engineering and analysis to the Air Force. A spokeswoman for the company declined to comment, saying the shooting is a "police matter."

Hamlan wrote that he specialized in ground-to-air communications and had worked at the company since 1985.

He was born in Saudi Arabia, raised in England and immigrated to the United States when he was 14. He was an avid dog lover who described himself as a "non-conformist rebel and nerd at the same time," he wrote.

Neighbor Mark Murphy, 49, was shocked by Hamlan’s death.

After considering the scenario, however, Murphy said it made sense.

"I mean, he was a loner," Murphy said. "He just wasn’t much of a socializer."

Murphy said he spoke to Hamlan on Monday, when he passed him walking his dogs. Hamlan smiled and waved at him, Murphy said.

"He was a good neighbor," he said. "It’s just a bad situation."

The sentiment was echoed by another neighbor, Phyllis, who was stranded outside the neighborhood as police investigated. Phyllis said she planned to go to a church and light a candle for her neighbor, although, like others, she barely knew him.

"I just feel sick for him," she said. "You just wonder what could have gone wrong."

Contact reporter Mike Blasky at mblasky@review journal.com or 702-383-0283.

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