South Pasadena, CA – Former ER star Vanessa Marquez was fatally shot by police after pointing a gun at an officer during a welfare check at her residence on Thursday.
The incident began at approximately 11:49 am., when Marquez’s landlord called police to report that he was concerned for Marquez’s well-being, the KABC reported.
Officers responded to the three-unit apartment building on Fremont Avenue, and said they had been called for assistance at the same residence on many occasions in the past.
According to police, Marquez, 49, had been suffering from problems associated with an eating disorder and was in the midst of an apparent seizure when they arrived, KABC reported.
“[She] was undergoing some medical problems, some seizures, [and] it appeared that the female was gravely disabled,” Los Angeles Sheriff’s Homicide Lieutenant Joe Mendoza said during a press conference, according to the South Pasadenan.
A mental health specialist was called to the scene and assisted police in their attempts to convince Marquez to accept medical care for about 90 minutes, KABC reported.
“There was an LA County mental health clinician here with the officers,” Lt. Mendoza said, according to the South Pasadenan. “They began to communicate with her. She became very uncooperative and during that contact she armed herself with a handgun. She pointed it at the officers and an officer-involved shooting occurred.”
She sustained at least one gunshot wound to the torso.
Marquez was rushed to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
Investigators later discovered that the weapon she pointed at officers was a BB gun that “resembled a semi-automatic handgun,” Lt. Mendoza said.
Marquez, who is best known for her role as nurse Wendy Goldman in the NBC drama series “ER,” also acted in several films, including “Stand and Deliver.”
In 2005, her shopping addiction was featured in an episode of A&E’s “Intervention.”
During a Twitter rant in October of 2017, Marquez claimed she was fired from “ER” after she came forward about being the victim of sexual and racial harassment on the set, Heavy reported.
In addition to referring to actor Eriq La Salle and an “ER” crew member as “p---y grabbers,” Marquez also accused three other cast members of abusing her due to her “Mexican heritage,” Page Six reported.
She said another of her coworkers, actor George Clooney, had her blacklisted as an actress.
“I had nothing to do with casting,” Clooney responded, according to Heavy. “I was an actor and only an actor. If she told I was involved in any decision about her career then she was lied to. The fact that I couldn’t affect her career is only surpassed by the fact that I wouldn’t.”
In a Facebook post on Aug. 8, Marquez blasted Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey for shutting down her account, and again lashed out at Clooney.
“I’ll start a debate,” Marquez wrote. “George is gay and Scientology keeps him from living an honest life and EVERYBODY KNOWS IT. Yup. Went there. Not exactly in a they go low, we go high place anymore. Discuss.”
According to the Daily Mail, Marquez also made many social media posts about her medical issues in the past, and said she had been diagnosed with pulmonary embolism, osteoporosis, and terminal celiac disease.