Speaking to reporters after the shooting, Schultz said the shooting occurred Friday night near a gas station.
According to investigators, officers arrived at the scene after receiving a report that a 60-year-old man was threatening two children with knives.
“We have witnesses who state that the male subject lunged at the officer, and the officer began to retreat from the man,” Schultz said. “The man continued to advance to the officer, lunging at him with the knife. The suspect, who has not yet been identified, was rushed to a hospital where he later died.”
Schultz said that when a second officer arrived, the suspect continued to aggressively go toward the officer. He said that second officer, a female officer, “discharged her firearm multiple times.”
Police say the man was holding two 10-inch butcher knives.
Schultz said another officer may have also shot the man. The identities of the officers involved in the shooting have not been released.
The shooting comes as the U.S. Justice Department is investigating the city’s police department after a string of alleged excessive force cases, including more than two dozen officer-involved shootings — 19 fatal — since 2010.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.
Albuquerque police officers shot and killed a man Friday night after he lunged at an officer with two 10-inch butcher knives near a gas station on San Mateo and Montgomery, Police Chief Ray Schultz said.
Police were sent to a shopping center in the 4600 block of San Mateo NE just before 7:40 p.m. when a security guard there called to report that the suspect, described as a 6-foot-2-inch-tall black man in his 60s, was threatening two kids with the knives. Police could not find the two children in order to question them, police said.
Two officers responded quickly to the scene, as did an officer who is part of the Albuquerque Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team.
As the officers were responding, they got more information that the suspect was at a nearby Circle K gas station in the parking lot, armed with the knives, Schultz said. The suspect lunged at one officer when he arrived, he said, and continued trying to stab the officer until, at 7:43 p.m., a female APD officer – and possibly a second officer – shot the man an undisclosed number of times.
The number of shots and who fired are still under investigation, Schultz told reporters at the scene late Friday. The suspect, who has not yet been identified, was taken to a local hospital, where he died.
The crisis intervention officer who arrived “self-dispatched,” the chief said, after hearing over the police scanner that the suspect might have mental issues. One of the responding officers recognized the suspect’s description from a fight several weeks ago in the area, Schultz said, and the officer then radioed in that the suspect might have mental issues.
The crisis intervention officer arrived just before the shots were fired, Schultz said.
Witnesses told police that the suspect was within 4 feet of the officer when he lunged at him, though investigators from several local law enforcement agencies were still at the scene as of 11 p.m. Friday, piecing through evidence and interviewing witnesses.
Investigators are asking any witnesses to come forward and provide information about what they saw. They’re asked to call APD or 242-COPS.