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The Journal Gazette

  • Jamie Duffy | The Journal Gazette Police tape runs outside the Hallmark Inn, 3070 E. Washington Blvd., after a police officer shot a man Saturday.

  • Cathie Rowand | The Journal Gazette Police monitor the scene at the Hallmark Inn, 3730 E. Washington Blvd., where a police-action shooting occurred Saturday night. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 8:58 am

Man with knife killed by police

Jamie Duffy | The Journal Gazette

A man was shot and killed by a Fort Wayne police officer Saturday after he refused to drop a knife and came closer to the officer with the weapon.

About 8:50 p.m., police got a call about an armed and threatening man in the rear of Hallmark Inn, 3730 E. Washington Blvd., said Officer Jeremy Webb, public information officer.

The officer gave repeated commands for the man to drop his knife, which he refused to do. Then, the man "closed the distance," prompting the officer to fear for his life.

"He gave him plenty of opportunities to drop the knife," Webb said.

The man was shot and fell, still clutching the knife, Webb said. The officer kicked away the knife and attempted to give first aid. Emergency service personnel arrived and pronounced the man dead.

It is the second police shooting in two days. Early Friday, a Fort Wayne SWAT team was called when Joseph S. Schroeder, 36, held a young child hostage inside a home on Stony Run Lane, police said.

Police negotiated with Schroeder for six hours before entering the home and killing Schroeder, believing he was about to harm the child. He was also armed with a knife.

The Hallmark Inn was one of several establishments called out as a nuisance requiring more than its share of police calls at a City Council meeting Sept. 27. The top four were also inns.

On Saturday night, one Hallmark Inn patron, Kaitlin O’Hern, said she could hardly wait to leave. Though she’d been there only since Wednesday, she and her husband had already changed rooms because of filthy conditions and bedbugs.

"I had to fight just to get a fridge and a microwave," she said.

She said she was living in the rear of the building and saw the knife-wielding man. Before police arrived, she said she heard a lot of screaming and running.

Her husband wasn’t going to get off work until midnight, she added.

"I was so scared," O’Hern said. "I told my husband we are going to get out of here right now."

If this shooting is ruled a homicide, it would be the 39th in Allen County this year.  

The shooting remains under investigation.

jduffy@jg.net