Suicide by cop? Denver cop shoots man who attacked squad car with hammer (VIDEO)

Categories: News

suicide by cop hammer attack.jpg
Video below.
The term "suicide by cop" has become a well-known phrase among fans of TV police procedurals and the like.

And at this point, an officer-involved shooting that took place yesterday afternoon near a Kmart on West Evans appears to be an extremely literal example of the phenomenon.

The first official communication about the incident came via the Denver Police Department's Twitter feed, in a message that gave only the barest hint about what went down.

BREAKING: DPD investigating an officer involved shooting - suspect critical, officer ok (Evans and Feral)
Dec 04 via Twitter for BlackBerry®FavoriteRetweetReply

As for the details, DPD spokeswoman Vicki Ferrari -- a former American Gladiator contestant who prevailed in an excessive force lawsuit against her earlier this year -- told 9News that a cop was parked near the Kmart doing paperwork when a man suddenly attacked with a hammer, smashing the window of the squad car and spraying the officer with broken glass.

The cop responded by opening fire, squeezing off five shots in the direction of the man, who was struck several times. He was transported to Denver Health where, at last report, he was in critical condition.

What the hell was the guy doing? Officers at the scene reportedly found an apparent suicide note in the man's pocket. Also located: a rental truck he'd been driving, with a machete inside.

At this writing, neither the man nor the officer who shot him have been identified. The investigation continues -- and it's likely to get even weirder.

Look below to see a 9News report on the incident.

Click here to follow and like the Michael Roberts/Westword Facebook page.

More from our Follow That Story archive: "Alfred Vigil ID'd as man who died in alleged suicide-by-cop shooting on Morrison Road."


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15 comments
SK
SK

selfish fuck

ItsMrPumpkinhead2U
ItsMrPumpkinhead2U

A bit off topic....why in the hell did news station send this reporter out in bad weather?  Makes no sense to me.  The story had nothing to do with the weather. 

Sharpshooter
Sharpshooter

The officer is probably so broken up about this it'll take a full day to carve a notch in his gun butt.

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

Michael, the fact that the phrase is in common use does not excuse your using it -- there can be no "literal example of the phenomenon", because it is an oxymoronic metaphor; if the police shoot someone to death, no one has committed suicide.  In this instance, the suspect has not died, so neither "suicide" nor "homicide" are appropriate descriptors.  Please interview the eyewitnesses to which Messia refers; if it is true that the officer shot the man four times while he was on the ground it would be more appropriate to describe this as a murderous police assault than anything else.  Does this officer have a name?

bigriggs
bigriggs

What the hell is wrong with people?

Messia
Messia

All I see is another murder committed by a member of DPD, which will go completely unpunished.

Shot him four times on the ground and then frisked him according to eyewitness.

Wow. 

HotPants
HotPants

So, the cop had access to a tazer and pepper spray, but decided to use lethal force?  What a pussy!  He obviously was scared to death as evidenced by firing 5 shots.  Where did the bullets that didn't hit the man end up?  Anyone else shot?

juno
juno

who was selfish???

Sanity
Sanity

Robert, you're amazingly dense if you really believe that people don't commit suicide by provoking police to shoot them. I hate cops and even I can accept this very real aspect of the society we live in that not every one of them wants to kill everyone without a badge.

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

As I mentioned in the post, neither the name of the officer nor the man who was shot have been named at this point. Thanks, as always, for weighing in.

Gypsypearl77
Gypsypearl77

I am the sister of the man who was shot... could you please tell me more about any eyewitness accounts you may know of.. and to set the record straight, he was hit twice in the back out of the 5 shots that the officer fired... and he is paralyzed... I don't think I should say much more than that... but Messia if you or anyone else reading this has any links or anything you can send me it would be greatly appreciated.

Here we go
Here we go

Wow. Really….Smarty pAnts meSia! I did not know you could murder someone without them dying! Really Gude commment… or is it good. I'm sure you know either way

Here we go
Here we go

It's too bad that you weren't there to talk to the raging man with the hammer out of his lethal fit he was throwing. I'll bet you could have talked him down and gave him a nice big hug as he was swinging a hammer at your skull. Maybe if you weren't spoon fed your whole life and had to actually make some real decisions, you might be a bit more objective. Actually….I doubt it.

SK
SK

The guy who wanted to die. He doesnt give a shit about the emotionial effect of other people because of his actions, He should have just blown his head off and not fucked with anyone else

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

It is a semantic point -- some suicidal people induce the police to kill them, but the phrase "suicide by cop" is, strictly speaking, inaccurate, in that they do not kill themselves.  Because Michael used the phrase ""literal example of the phenomenon", I felt justified in objecting.  The use of the phrase generally makes me uneasy, in that it firmly roots responsibility for killings not with those doing the killing, but with those who putatively were suicidal.  I accept that the phenomenon occurs, and that police often are acting justifiably in self-defense when it does, but the catchphrase should be retired. 

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