FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4) – The family of a man shot to death by a Fort Collins police officer said Monday they’re searching for answers why the father of five was killed.

Police said Tino Martinez, 27, shot an officer in an apparent scuffle on the stairs at an apartment complex on Sunday afternoon. The officer returned fire, killing Martinez.

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“They left five kids without a father and they’re hurting,” Cindy Chamorrow, the victim’s sister-in-law, said.

The shooting occurred near Shields Street and Drake Road. Police responded to a report that a man was sprawled across a staircase and needed help.

“Mr. Martinez was being a little uncooperative with the officer as he was trying to ascertain why he was there,” Deputy Chief Cory Christensen, of Fort Collins Police Services, said.

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According to police, Martinez pulled a handgun from his backpack and shot the officer.

“And now his five babies have to suffer without a father he was just trying to do his best for his kids,” Chamorrow said. She said she doesn’t believe Martinez had a gun.

Police said they found his small-caliber revolver at the scene.

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One bullet pierced the officer’s skin, but he was not seriously hurt. His bullet-proof vest saved his life, they said.