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GASTONIA, N.C. -- Family members of a man shot dead Friday in a struggle with Gastonia police said they are not shocked by the incident.

The family members, including two sons who asked not to be identified, said Kenneth Glaze had been in and out of prison for most of his adult life, and told them he never wanted to go back.

He said they'd have to kill him, said one son.

Family members also said Glaze was drunk Friday night and was a frequent user of prescription medications, which had not been prescribed to him personally.

Gastonia Police Department said in a statement early Saturday that Glaze's sister, Judy, and her boyfriend called police after Glaze threatened them with hedge shears Friday night.

Judy Glaze told police that her brother also choked her and slapped her boyfriend, according to the statement.

Glaze's son told NBC Charlotte that officers chased Kenneth Glaze through his sister's back yard and caught up with him near the back fence.

The police statement said Glaze struggled for one of the officers' gun and shots were fired. Glaze died.

The officers, Michael Watts and Travis Kistler, were placed on administrative leave, which is standard in a shooting involved in a police officer.

Watts has worked as a Gastonia police officer since 1999, and Kistler was hired in May 2009.

Gastonia police said state law allows an officer to use deadly force to defend himself or another person from the threat of death, or when a person is trying to use a weapon to escape from police custody when his escape presents the threat of death or serious injury to others.

The shooting is being investigated by the State Bureau of Investigations and Gastonia Police Dept.'s Office of Professional Standards. The SBI will present its evidence to the District Attorney for review.

Glaze's prison records show he has been in and out of prison since his first conviction in 1983 for felony breaking and entering, larceny, and safecracking. He had one prior arrest for shoplifting in 1978, in which he was given a suspended sentence under his youthful offender status.

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