A knife wielding Bronx man told cops to “shoot me, shoot me” during a tense street confrontation last month in which the officers fired six times and killed the suspect, according to body camera footage released Thursday by the NYPD.
The release of the 48 seconds of video, a composite of views from the body cameras of the two officers involved, showed Michael Hansford, 52, chasing a man identified as his landlord around a car outside 3121 Prospect Ave. as two officers from the 48th Precinct arrived.
Investigators said Hansford had a dispute over back rent with his landlord, whose jacket he slashed with the knife by the time the cops got there.
The officers, who the NYPD did not identify, are heard on the audio repeatedly telling Hansford to “drop the knife.” The body camera video images were generally dark, bouncing and indistinct but in the end showed Hansford step off a sidewalk and advance toward officers, telling them numerous times to “shoot me” in the moments before he was shot.
Release of the footage is the fourth time the NYPD has disseminated body camera images from police shootings since the department began giving officers cameras in April 2017.
While previous shooting videos have shown clear, well lighted scenes, the latest images were taken at night under available street lighting and had a lot of image movement. No faces were clearly visible and the video segments shown to reporters ended with the sound of gunshots.
“This is literally guys running around with a guy who has got a knife,” said Deputy Commissioner Stephen Davis.
Police officials said the two officers, who had 3 1⁄2 years and 2 years on the force, told Hansford to drop the knife about 22 times while he told the cops to shoot him about eight times, said Insp. Kevin Maloney of the NYPD force investigation division. Both cops remain on active duty.
The shooting, which was a first for both officers, is under review by the department to determine its justification. The Bronx district attorney’s office is also reviewing the case, said a spokeswoman for the office.