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SAN CARLOS, Calif. – Deputies arrested a man in California after he allegedly beheaded a woman in the middle of a busy street as witnesses looked on.

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The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office announced on Twitter that they had arrested an adult for murder after witnesses called them about an assault in progress late Thursday morning.

Law enforcement sources told KGO that just before noon they began receiving reports that a woman’s head had been cut off with a sword.

In a news conference, the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office said that Jose Solano Landaeta used a “stabbing instrument” to kill the woman, but did not offer further details about the weapon, KNTV reported.

“Anytime someone loses their life, it’s certainly a tragedy,” San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Eamonn Allen said, KNTV reported. “As far as the shocking nature of it, I do know that the deputies that first arrived on scene were a little beset by the scene. We are providing them peer support. We are also providing support for the witnesses that were on scene as well because there were several civilian witnesses.”

Some witnesses described the weapon as a samurai sword, KTNV reported.

“The head was underneath the car and she was laying in the back of the car — just severed,” Chapel Thorborne, a neighbor, told KGO. “After he cut her head off, he came walking up, him and his two friends. And they walked right by me and they arrested him.”

The woman was killed in the street outside her home, with her two young children inside, investigators told KGO. The little girls, ages 7 and 1, were inside the house with a dog and two cats when their mother was killed, the station reported.

Neighbors told KNTV that the victim and Landaeta lived together and had moved to the neighborhood about three years ago.

“They seemed like they loved each other,” Thorborne told KNTV.

Investigators told KGO that the victim had been granted a temporary restraining order against Landaeta in April.

The victim’s name was not released. Police said they are continuing to search for the murder weapon.