A Brooklyn Center police officer shot and killed a man who police said was carrying a rifle down the middle of a street Thursday night.

According to Brooklyn Center Police Chief Kevin Benner, officers responded to a report of a man wielding a rifle with a scope at 53rd and Emerson Avenues N. just after 8:30 p.m. The first officer on the scene confronted a man and "was forced to shoot the suspect, who died at the scene," Benner said in a news release issued at midnight.

Dozens of police officers from Brooklyn Center and Minneapolis, as well as representatives of the Hennepin County medical center's office, remained at the scene into the early hours Friday.

A group of about 60 area residents gathered near the scene of the shooting for more than an hour, some of them yelling angrily at police officers and journalists. Some said they had heard the victim was a young teenager carrying a bat, but those reports were not substantiated by police.

There were also reports that the victim may have been a 20-year-old student at a local alternative school.