'Drop the knife:' JSO officer kills man holding knife to wheelchair-bound Army veteran's throat

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A man with a knife is dead, according to police, following an officer-involved shooting in Jacksonville.

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The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said they were called out to an armed aggravated assault in the 700 block of West State Street near the Ritz Theatre around 11:20 p.m. Wednesday.

At the scene on a sidewalk, police said a man was holding a knife to the neck of another man in a wheelchair and refused to drop the knife after the officer gave a verbal command.

The officer, fearing for their life and the victim's life, shot and killed the knife-wielding suspect, JSO said.

"This further illustrates the point how quickly these things unfold and the decision-making that has to be made in these type of instances. It's really quick. He had to make that decision that he made in order to save a life," a JSO spokesperson said.

The officer was wearing a body camera and was not injured.

Action News Jax is reaching out to JSO to see if and when the video could be released.

Action News Jax reporter Elizabeth Pace spoke to the man in the wheelchair Thursday morning. He said he is an Army veteran who has lived in Jacksonville all of his life. He asked not to be identified.

He said he met the suspect this week and he seemed like a nice, quiet man. Wednesday night, he was acting belligerent while holding a knife, threatening to hurt people nearby.

While he was sitting in his wheelchair, he said the suspect charged at him and held the knife to his throat. Witnesses called police and one officer quickly responded.

He remembered the officer yelling, “Drop the knife!” But the suspect refused and shots were fired.

He was sent to the hospital with a cut on his nose and was later released.

Several witnesses were in the area at the time.

Police are expected to give another update regarding this shooting around 2 p.m. on Friday.

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