Michael Habay killed after wielding knife wearing "body armor," Boulder cops say
Does the gear worn while dirt biking or taking part in paintball games qualify as "body armor"? That's among the assertions made by the Boulder Police Department in explaining the fatal shooting of Michael Habay, 42, by a BPD officer. And while an investigation of the events that led to Habay's death are under investigation, the info released by the department thus far comes across as an argument that the shoot was justified -- a sort of preemptive charm offensive accompanied by shots of the weapons the man had on him when he died.
Photos and more below.
The shooting took place on Sunday, November 24, with the narrative provided by the BPD getting underway at about 7:45 a.m. The location: 3009 Madison, in one unit of an apartment complex depicted in the following interactive graphic. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."
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Officers were dispatched to apartment J208 of the complex following a phone call from the mother of Kirsten Stenseng, 41; she was concerned her daughter was in danger. Upon their arrival, however, Stenseng, who was waiting for the cops outside the apartment, assured them there was no problem between her and her boyfriend, Habay.
An attempt to contact Habay proved unsuccessful, and with Stenseng agreeing to leave the scene and the only possible offense the violation of a restraining order, the officers decided to move on. After all, the release notes, "The suspect could be charged with the restraining order violation at a later time."
Later came sooner than expected. At 12:30 p.m. that same day, a neighbor called the BPD with a report that Habay had been hollering and throwing things outside the apartment. In addition, Habay was said to have used to knife to stab a large wooden post outside the apartment, and the BPD notes that "the manner in which the suspect was yelling" led the caller to believe Stenseng was inside and at potential risk from her boyfriend.
With that, police personnel rushed to the scene again. But this time, Stenseng wasn't awaiting them outside the apartment, despite the presence of her gold Cadillac in the parking lot. So what's described as "an entry team of four officers" was quickly assembled, and after no one responded to their request to come inside, they made ready to break in -- at which point Habay could be seen allegedly running toward the door holding a knife in each of his hands.
Here's one photo of a knife recovered from the scene, as provided by the BPD....
The BPD characterizes the outfit Habay wore like so: "a black t-shirt, khaki pants and body armor, the type one might wear for dirt bike riding or paint ball games. He had shoulder pads and a breast pad, elbow pads and shin guards on. He was also wearing furry Ugg boots."
Continue for more about the officer-involved shooting of Michael Habay, including another photo.