SWAT officer shoots man threatening police dog with knife
Jacksonville police shot and killed a man Wednesday who was threatening a police dog with a knife after a standoff.
The shooting occurred when the man ran from police in the Bentwater Place subdivision west of Hodges Boulevard. A woman trapped inside the home had managed to escape hours earlier, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said.
Police did not release the man's name, but they said he had had repeated confrontations with the woman, including a recent break-in and assault at the same house.
"He was holding the dog back with his left hand," Chief Alan Parker said. "As the SWAT officer is there close, giving commands, he raised the knife in an apparent attempt to stab the dog. ... The SWAT officer engaged him, fired his rifle and the suspect was down at that scene. He did not survive his injuries."
The incident began about 12:30 a.m. as officers investigated a possible kidnapping and burglary at the home, police said.
Police contacted the woman inside, who told officers the man trapped her in the home after jimmying open the garage door to get inside.
Officers told the woman to escape through a bathroom window, which she did. When officers tried to contact the man, he threw objects out the front door, then refused any further contact, Parker said.
SWAT was called in with negotiators about 5 a.m., Parker said, followed later by the Sheriff's Office's Urban Assault Vehicle. The man ran from the home with the knife and did not follow commands, Parker said.
Officers fired what Parker called "a less lethal round" at the man, but he ran into a nearby backyard, then tried to get into an adjoining yard, Parker said. Officers sent a K9 after the man. One officer shot him when he raised the knife at the dog, Parker said. The officer was not identified.
Police said the suspect had previous convictions on weapons and drug charges, as well as charges of domestic battery and aggravated assault against the woman. Parker did not specify their relationship — only that "they have a history, a recent history."
"You never know how it's going to end," Parker said. "The suspect had plenty of opportunities to comply, and this would have been over hours ago. He pushed it to this level, and unfortunately it ended in this manner
This is the fourth shooting involving a police officer so far this year, all of them fatal, according to the Sheriff's Office's Transparency website. The incidents were Feb. 2 in the 5300 block of Lannie Road, Jan. 20 in the 1800 block of Hardee Street and Jan. 19 in the 13000 block of North Main Street.
Wednesday's shooting was the second for the officer.