A 27-year-old man, who had held a knife to his own neck, was fatally shot in his Springfield Gardens home by police Friday afternoon, the NYPD and the man’s relatives said.
Walwyn Jackson, whose nickname was Smiley, was taken to Jamaica Hospital, where he died three hours later, according to police and his family.
Relatives said Jackson was depressed that he could not find employment to help support his two-week-old son.
“He just had the baby and didn’t have a job,” Jackson’s grief-stricken mother Lorna Francis said, while sitting on the floor of her son’s home.
According to the NYPD, police were called to the house at about 4:45 p.m. to respond to a report of a man holding a knife to his neck.
Jackson’s grandmother Gloria Cameron said the family had noticed a knife missing from the kitchen and went to check on Jackson upstairs.
“When I saw him, he had it at his throat,” Cameron said.
Relatives went to get a male cousin who they hoped could convince Jackson to hand over the knife and later the family called for an ambulance.
Cameron said she opened the front door to two police officers, who started walking up the stairs and gesturing for Cameron and another family member to stay on the main level.
“I see him [one officer] go for his gun. I say, ‘No, he’s sick,’” Cameron said.
Police said the officers ordered Jackson to drop the knife repeatedly but he refused and began to walk towards them with it in the air. Then an officer fired one shot, which hit Jackson in the shoulder, according to the NYPD
“I was standing here when I heard the shot,” Cameron said, while in the kitchen of the home on 144th Terrace.
After the gunshot, she ran outside, and the next time she saw her grandson, he was being taken away on a stretcher.
“They never uncuffed him,” Cameron said.
Police said the officer was taken to North Manhasset Medical Center to be treated for tinnitus, and an investigation into the incident is continuing, according to a statement from the NYPD.
Francis said she spoke to her son on the phone shortly before he died.
“I told him to put the knife down because when the ambulance comes, the cops come, and when the cops come, they are going to shoot you,” she said.
She said the last thing her son told her was, “Mommy, I love you.”
Jackson, who had attended Martin Van Buren High School in Queens Village, had recently become a father to a son named Landon.
According to his mother, he had worked as a medical technician but was currently out of a job.
Francis flew up from Atlanta after she got the news. On Saturday evening, a stream of friends poured into the house to console her.
“How are you calling the ambulance for help and your child ends up dead?” she asked.
Reach photo editor Christina Santucci by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4589.
©2012 Community News Group
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