A man who telephoned a hot line to say he had a gun and was dreaming of killing children died after police shot him with supposedly non-lethal bean bag projectiles, officials said. Lester Zachary died Wednesday at a hospital, two days after he was shot at his home with two bean bag bullets.

Zachary, 45, died of internal bleeding caused by a bullet hitting his spleen area, Muscogee County Coroner James Dunnavant said Thursday.

A bean bag bullet is intended by police as a non-lethal alternative to shooting someone with a gun, Police Chief Ricky Boren said.

The silver dollar-sized bean bag is compressed in a shell casing and loaded into a specialized 12-gauge shotgun. It is designed to create an impact strong enough to make suspects fall to the ground so officers can handcuff them.

In this case, the coroner said, the bullet caused internal bleeding. Zachary could not be operated on because he was on blood thinners from a heart condition, Dunnavant said.

Police went to Zachary's house early Monday after Zachary called the Veterans Affairs Hospital hot line. He told a nurse he was dreaming of killing children and himself and that he had a gun. The nurse called police, Boren said.