Man shot dead point blank by Miami Beach police after attempted bank hold-up

Man shot dead point blank by Miami Beach police after attempted bank hold-up

Originally published on 06 December, 2015

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A man who allegedly attempted to hold up a bank in Miami, Florida on Saturday was shot dead by police a short distance away following a brief standoff.

A video posted to social media by a bystander appears to show the final moments of the man’s life, a tense moment in which police say the man raised a shaving razor to officers at the moment he was shot, CNN reports.

Miami Beach Police Chief Daniel Oates told a media briefing that officers had been looking for the man, described as Hispanic, shortly after 10.26 a.m. on Saturday when he entered a Bank of America branch at 1413 Alton Road. The Miami Herald reports the man handed staff a note demanding money, and indicated he had a bomb and that would shoot someone if bank staff did not comply.

Oates said the man then left without any cash and without firing any shots or hurting anyone. He’s then understood to have travelled north two blocks to the Razzledazzle Barbershop.

Marcellus Johnson, the local photographer who posted the widely circulated video to Instagram, said he saw the man through the barbershop window.

“I looked to my left and there was a guy inside of the barbershop … and he was banging on the window with a sharp object, maybe a knife or so,” Johnson told CNN. “The police were trying to get him to come outside of the establishment. He eventually came out.”

Police say the man armed himself with a straight razor and removed his shirt. On exiting the business he was told by police to drop the razor but refused to do so.

After a standoff with a number of officers, one officer armed with a rifle fired a number of shots, killing the man. The officer is described as Hispanic, but was not named.

Witnesses offered differing accounts as to whether the police first shot the man with a taser. Miami Beach police have not said said if a stun device was used.

Oates told media one officer was wearing a body camera and that they believe they have video of the event. He also said Miami-Dade county police will investigate the shooting, rather than his own department.

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