Man killed by police was threatening spouse's life
Published Saturday, September 19, 2009 4:24PM PDT
A man shot dead by Vancouver police Friday night had been threatening his wife with a knife, authorities said Saturday.
At about 9:30 p.m., officers responded to a domestic violence call in the 2500-block of Birch Street in the city's West Side.
After forcing their way into a suite, the officers encountered a man holding a knife to his wife's throat, said RCMP Sgt. Peter Thiessen, who is handling media inquiries about the case.
An officer fired a Taser at the man but was unable to subdue him. Two other officers then fired their guns at the man, killing him.
The man was identified as 46-year-old Eugene Anthony Knight.
After the shooting, a sobbing woman was escorted out of the building by officers and taken away in a police car.
Police say Knight's wife, also 46, was not hurt. The woman and her 13-year-old daughter, who was also home at the time, are getting help from counselors.
Vancouver police said 911 operators had reported hearing a woman scream and shout for her life.
The officer who fired the Taser has 18 years experience with the Vancouver police. The two officers who fired their guns have 10 years and nine months experience.
Witnesses said they heard multiple shots fired.
"I heard the cops yell at him. 'Drop the knife! Drop the knife!'" said witness James Jeaffre.
He said he then heard five or six shots.
Neighbourhood resident Phil George said he heard four or five shots and called 911. He said he had heard loud arguments in the building before.
Thiessen said he could not confirm how many shots were fired, but said there was more than one.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team has taken the lead on the investigation. The Office of the Public Complaints Commission has also been contacted.
Meanwhile, another officer-involved shooting on Vancouver Island Friday night left a 40-year-old Duncan man in critical condition in hospital.
The shooting happened in Chemainus at about 9:30 p.m. during a traffic stop. Some kind of altercation ensued and an officer shot the driver, who was outside the vehicle, RCMP said.