Las Vegas, NV – A man armed with a butcher knife was fatally shot by police on Mar. 29, after he refused to drop his weapon, and came at officers, according to the sheriff (video below).
The Las Vegas Metro Police Department (LVMPD) was called for a report of a domestic disturbance at an apartment complex at 11:43 a.m., Assistant Sheriff Charles Hank said during a press conference on Monday.
The female caller said she had been “battered” by 39-year-old Christopher Gatewood, who was in possession of a large kitchen knife, Sheriff Hank said.
The LVMPD dispatched its Crisis Intervention Team officers, as per policy, due to a history of previous calls at Gatewood’s residence.
The officers made contact with the female victim outside the home. She told them that Gatewood had assaulted her, and that he was still inside the apartment, armed with the knife.
He was also “possibly suicidal,” she said, according to Sheriff Hank.
The woman told police that Gatewood made a dark promise before she called for help.
“If you call the cops, I’m going to hurt them, or make them shoot me,” he told the victim, according to the sheriff.
Using their duty weapons and a Taser for coverage, the officers knocked on Gatewood’s door, and announced their presence.
Gatewood eventually cracked the door open slightly, and began yelling at police.
“Let us see your hands!” the officers said in the video.
“You wanna see my hands?” Gatewood seemed to taunt from behind the door.
Suddenly, he appeared in the small opening of the door, and flashed the nearly eight-inch blade at police.
“What’s in my hand?” he yelled.
“Don’t you do it!” an officer commanded. “Drop the knife!”
“We don’t want to do this, man,” an officer cautioned as Gatewood began opening the apartment door wider. “Drop the knife!”
“What are you gonna do?” Gatewood asked, while he quickly swapped the blade into his right hand, dropped a piece of paper to the ground, and stepped outside.
“What are you gonna do?” he screamed, as he aggressively came at the officers.
LVMPD Officer Rafael Camacho, 28, and Officer Kenshin Rose, 28, opened fire, striking Gatewood in his upper body, Sheriff Hank said.
The officer who was providing Taser coverage simultaneously deployed the device, the video showed.
Emergency medical personnel pronounced Gatewood dead at the scene, the sheriff said.
During investigation of the incident, detectives discovered evidence of methamphetamine use in the apartment, he added. Gatewood also had an apparent self-inflicted cut to his right wrist.
Officer Camacho, 28, a four-year veteran of the department, fired eight rounds. Officer Rose, who had been with the LVMPD for eight months, fired four rounds, Sheriff Hank said.
Both officers were assigned to the Tourist Safety Division. Officer Rose was in the process of completing his field training under the guidance of Officer Camacho, the sheriff said.
Both have been placed on paid administrative leave, pending the outcome of the officer-involved shooting investigation, as is protocol.
Sheriff Hank said that Gatewood had two prior domestic violence convictions. His criminal history included sale of controlled substance, and traffic warrants.
He would have been charged with battery/domestic violence, and four counts of assault with a deadly weapon on a protected person, had he survived, the sheriff added.
You can see the video of the incident below: