A man was shot and killed by police officers in North St. Louis, Missouri after allegedly charging at officers with a knife, Chief Sam Dotson said at a news conference on Tuesday. The incident took place just days after police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown, sparking violent protests throughout Ferguson, Missouri, 10 miles from North St. Louis.
The suspect had “taken energy drinks and a package of pastries from a nearby convenience store,” was “acting erratically” and “did not drop the weapon” per police instruction, Dotson claimed. The man then approached both officers, wielding the knife in an “overhand grip.” Witnesses say the man yelled “shoot me, kill me now” and was fatally shot once he reached within four feet of the officers.
The officers have since been placed on administrative duty. The suspect is described as a 23-year-old black male, but hat not yet been identified.
On August 20, the police released a cell phone video of the shooting. The confrontation in the video appears to differ substantially from the official police account. The police had said the man — identified as Kajieme Powell — confronted them aggressively while holding a knife with an overhand grip. According to the initial account, Powell was shot when he was just three or four feet from the officers.
In the video, the officers also appear to handcuff Powell after he was killed. [WARNING: Disturbing/graphic content]: