MIAMI (CBSMiami) – It is a police officer’s worst fear – a person with issues, in this case an ex-Marine with depression, who wanted to die suicide by cop.
The incident went down last November in West Miami-Dade, and it was caught on police body cam.
The video showed as Miami-Dade police officers pleaded with the man, who was armed with a knife, to calm down.
“Put it down, put it down,” an officer is heard saying.
The confrontation slowly unfolds with the officers containing the distraught knife-wielding man, who described himself as a father who’s been shot before.
“Sir, listen to me, put the knife down. We don’t want to hurt you,” the officer says.
The confrontation continued as officers tried to de-escalate the volatile situation.
But in the end, the officer with the body cam activates his Taser, sending the man on the ground.
Officers rushed in to render aid.
The Miami-Dade police officials are proud of their officers.
“What we are most proud of is the training of our officers. The crisis intervention training,” said Maj. Hector Llevat.
And situations like this are all too common, something police officers face every day and train for.
Miami-Dade police were recognized for their proactive stance by President Obama, who wrote in the Harvard Law Review:
“Miami-Dade County has responded to almost 50,000 calls for help for people suffering from mental health issues in the last five years, but has only made 109 arrests and instead has directed more than 10,000 to services or safely stabilized situations without arrest.”
It’s exactly what happened here with this man.
“That happens all the time, happens all the time,” said Maj. Llevat. “This case go captured on video, but these officers do things like this all the time, par for the course.”
And what if this had gone badly? Would the video be as freely available as this one?
“We are going to be transparent and we will release video when it exists,” said Maj. Llevat.