A Montgomery County police officer shot and killed a man who charged with a butcher knife May 7 in Silver Spring, Md. The officer issued several warnings and commands before the suspect finally charged, causing the fatal shooting.
Montgomery County Officer Responds
The incident began when police responded to a 9-1-1 call, reported washingtonpost.com. A neighbor reportedly said the suspect, 30-year-old Finan H. Berhe, threw a rock at his window, telling him to “call the police.” The caller also told police he saw Berhe armed with a large butcher knife.
Officer body cam footage shows an officer repeatedly warn and order Berhe to drop the knife. Approximately a full minute goes by, all the while the officer issues warnings. But the suspect never appears to consider the officer’s commands. Instead, he backs off and seemingly regroups, before finally rushing the officer once again.
“The subject rushed at the officer. The officer retreated a little bit. The subject then began to walk backwards,” Montgomery County Police Chief Marcus Jones told washingtonpost.com. “The officer again repeated to the individual several times to get on the ground and to drop the knife.”
Finally, the suspect inexplicably charged the officer, with the knife still clearly in hand. At this point, Berhe left the officer very little choice. Footage shows the officer fire his weapon five times.
“The subject went down, shot, at that particular time,” Jones said, reported washingtonpost.com.
The officer fired at least five shots as the suspect quickly covered ground during the charge. Following the shooting, the officer attempted to render first aid to the suspect. Officials transported Berhe to a local hospital where he died from his injuries. The department placed the officer on administrative leave, following department policy, reported washingtonpost.com.