A Tempe police cruiser sits at the scene where an officer shot a man believed to be armed with a knife or box cutter Sept. 12. (Source: CBS 5 News)
Austin Del Castillo (Tempe Police Department)
Tempe police investigate the scene of the officer-involved shooting Sept. 12. (Source: CBS 5 News)
TEMPE, AZ (CBS5) -
A man armed with a box cutter who was shot and wounded by a Tempe police officer Sept. 12 has died.
An officer approached 35-year-old Austin Del Castillo about 8:30 a.m. at Mill Avenue and University Drive, according to a police spokesman.
"They surrounded the guy in a triangle and with their firearms drawn, and it looked like he was pulling a box cutter or something out of his pocket," said witness Jeffrey Hollingsworth.
One of the officers, a trained negotiator, tried to calm him down.
"She attempted to speak to the individual using some of her experience and some of her training in order to get the suspect to comply, but unfortunately that didn't work this morning," said Tempe police Sgt. Steve Carbajal.
He said the officer tried to get Del Castillo to drop his weapon and that she shot him as he approached the officers.
Hollingsworth, who was nearby, said he heard six rounds fired.
"I think it was a little outrageous and in a crowded street with people walking around," Hollingsworth said.
But police said they had no choice.
"He did have the instrument in his hand, he did charge our officer and the officer discharged his weapon striking the subject," Carbajal said.
The officer, who is a 12-year veteran of the department, was placed on administrative leave.
Stay with cbs5az.com and CBS 5 News as this story develops.
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