Officer involved shooting in Phoenix

Police fatally shoot man swinging Samurai sword

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PHOENIX -

It was a strange turn of events took place in downtown Phoenix: A sword wielding suspect swung his weapon towards several officers, forcing them to shoot and kill him.

This happened near 19th Avenue and McDowell not far from the Arizona State Fairgrounds Tuesday morning.

Police tape stretched across Culver Street -- evidence, including the sheath of a Samurai sword lay on the ground -- the very weapon Phoenix Police say a suspect used to attack three officers.

"We have people that point weapons at us.  We have individuals who have knives, who use other weapons.. actual Samurai sword of this type is unusual," said Sgt. Steve Martos.

An officer patrolling the area around 5:30 a.m. spotted a car with the suspect inside with the hood up -- the license plate, according to police, was registered to another vehicle.

The officer called for back up and once the suspect was taken out of the vehicle, he produced a sword and started swinging.  All three officers fired -- killing the man.

"Why would you do anything towards an officer?" said Cory Voss, a business owner.

19th Avenue from Interstate 10 to McDowell was closed to traffic as a result of the shooting.

Employees of a business located right where this all went down were unable to get to work and waited at a local diner.  Everyone was shocked by the suspect's alleged actions.

According to police, all three officers deployed Tasers, using every means possible to stop the suspect before shooting him.

"They functioned correctly.  In fact, they are still attached to the suspect, however, they were ineffective on this individual," said Martos.

Investigators found the sword several feet away in a gravel area and searched the car for any information that could help them figure out why this happened.

As for the suspect's identity, Martos stated, "This individual is not known to be involved in any other crimes, however the investigation is still ongoing.  His identity is not yet known and family has not been located."

None of the officers were hurt during the confrontation.

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