N. Philadelphia man armed with cleaver shot to death by police

Police shot and killed a North Philadelphia man Friday after he shrugged off a Taser jolt and, while wielding a meat cleaver, told officers, "I'm not going to jail or the hospital."

The 53-year-old man, whose name has not been released, was struck in the chest and an arm, said Lt. Frank Vanore, a police spokesman.

The man, whose last known address was in the 2600 block of North 12th Street, died at Temple University Hospital just after 4 p.m.

He was visiting a family friend in the 1200 block of West Howard Street, just south of Lehigh Avenue, when he became enraged, Vanore said. The resident of the home fled down the street to call police.

Vanore did not know what had angered the man, or if the suspect had been using drugs or suffered from any mental illness.

"He obviously had some kind of issue," Vanore said.

Officers arrived and tried talking to the man, who was then on the second floor of the home. They called crisis-intervention officers, who carry Tasers and are trained to deal with the mentally ill.

Negotiations and confrontations with the shirtless man moved back and forth between the house and the street.

At one point, an officer shot the suspect with a Taser, to no effect. The suspect "continued to become violent," Vanore said.

The man, armed at various times with a knife and the cleaver, eventually charged at a group of six officers gathered on the street, Vanore said.

One officer from the 22d District fired, striking the suspect, he said. Under standard procedure, the officer will be placed on desk duty pending the outcome of the investigation.


Contact staff writer Troy Graham at 215-854-2730 or tgraham@phillynews.com.