SACRAMENTO -- A man was shot and killed during a confrontation with Sacramento police Monday morning on Del Paso Boulevard near Dell Street in North Sacramento after he was reportedly acting erratic and allegedly came after police officers with a knife.
It was in response to a call that police arrived on Lochbrae Road, where the incident began, with reports of a man acting strangely. Witnesses say the man was making karate motions in the air, threw his knife up and down and may have potentially been carrying a pistol in his waistband.
"He took a gun and knife out, he was throwing them in the air. He was urinating on himself. He started going crazy after that, as soon as he saw police he just got furious,” said witness Shawtae Grimes.
"He wasn't within his right kind, and you could tell,” said Melissa Gudis.
Witnesses say they heard police demanding the man drop his knife, but he refused. Sacramento police Sgt. Bryce Heinlein says eventually the man charged an officer who was inside a patrol car.
"In an attempt to keep himself safe he locked the doors to his patrol car. The subject circled around his vehicle at that time,” said Heinlein.
He took off running, knife in hand toward businesses, according to police. They chased after him until he stopped and a group of officers confronted him. That’s when police say, things went from bad to worse.
"He turned towards the officers, raising the knife. At that time, two officers fired their service weapon at the individual,” said Heinlein.
"Gunshots rang out. Like several. My neighbor says five, but I remember like 8 to 10. I'm not really sure,” said L.T. Clayton, another witness.
Clayton lives in the area and says she heard most of the incident as it was happening.
The circumstances are different than recent police shootings around the country, but Monday she felt like the nationwide fervor crept into her own backyard.
"I literally put my face in my hands and I got really teary-eyed because there's just so much going on,” said Clayton.
She, like others who didn’t wish to speak to FOX40 on camera, wondered why police had to use their guns to defend themselves from the man, rather than use a taser or other means to disarm him.
Police were questioned about their use of tasers, however, Heinlein says it’s too early in the investigation process to determine why they were not used.
The suspect was pronounced dead at the hospital. The incident is now under a joint investigation, internally by the Sacramento Police Department and by the District Attorney’s Office.
Police say there is dash camera video of the incident. It’s unclear whether it will be released.