KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A man shot by police after swinging a sword at vehicles and people at a Kansas City, Missouri, park has died.
Authorities say Javon M. Hawkins, 21, was swinging the sword at vehicles and people at Blenheim Park in the 7100 block of Highland around 5:00 P.M. on Thursday. When police arrived on the scene, officers ordered Hawkins to drop the sword. A police spokesperson says that when Hawkins turned towards one of the officers with the sword, the officer opened fire—hitting Hawkins with a gunshot to the abdomen.
The suspect was taken to an area hospital where he died on Friday.
“He was standing on the corner swinging hitting cars, diving in traffic, ” witness Tony Peak told FOX 4 on Thursday.
Peak says the man had been running throughout the neighborhood for hours but when he came back through, he threatened to strike a neighbor with a sword he was swinging and that neighbor called 911.
“He started running in circles, took off his clothes. He was going crazy. Going nuts,” witness Kechelle Herring said.
Families say the suspect then ran into Blenheim Park and minutes later police got on scene.
“She told him multiple times to halt, to comply, he was not listening at all,” Peak said.
Witnesses say several shots were fired and then the suspect fell down seemingly lifeless. Witnesses we talked to believe the suspect was holding a large pipe, and not a sword as reported by police.
“It looked like a pole or a long stick. Metal pipe or something,” Peak said.
“It was a long metal object from my perspective, it was a pipe,” Herring said.
The police officer, identified only as a female officer, was placed on routine administrative leave following the shooting. There were no other injuries reported in the incident, which remains under investigation.