A veteran Cleveland police sergeant shot and killed an armed man Tuesday after the man charged toward the officer’s cruiser, police said.
It was the first fatal police shooting in Cleveland since November 2012, when an unarmed man and woman were killed in a hail of gunfire after a long car chase.
Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the sergeant was the first officer to respond to a 911 call about 9:15 a.m. about a man firing a gun at someone in an east side neighborhood.
The officer was driving slowly down a street when a man holding a gun stepped off the sidewalk, approached the car and screamed at the officer, Williams said. The sergeant began to slowly back up his cruiser while ordering the man to drop the gun, Williams said. When the man failed to heed the officer’s warning and charged toward him, the officer fired three shots while still sitting inside his cruiser, the chief said.
Williams said the sergeant got out of his car, took the gun out of the man’s hand and tried to provide first aid. The man was pronounced dead at a Cleveland hospital. A police spokeswoman said the Cuyahoga County medical examiner’s office will release the man’s name.
Spent shell casings were found inside the gun, Williams said.
The Cleveland police department’s use-of-deadly-force team, the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office and the medical examiner’s office will investigate the shooting, Williams said. The sergeant, who police officials would not identify, has been placed on administrative leave.
The U.S. Department of Justice has been investigating the Cleveland police department’s pursuit and use of force policies since the 2012 incident in which officers fired 137 shots into a car in the parking lot of a suburban school, killing two unarmed people. Six officers have been indicted in the shooting.