Atlantic City, NJ – Harrowing bodycam footage captured the moment that an officer fatally shot a man who attacked him with a knife.
The video has just been released by the Atlantic County prosecutor’s office on Tuesday (video below).
The incident occurred on the evening of June 22, after Atlantic City police officers responded to a report of a hit-and-run crash involving injuries, the prosecutor’s office said in a press release.
Bodycam footage showed the officers as they spoke with a man and a little girl standing beside a work utility van.
Suddenly, a tall male in a red shirt approached the group with a knife in his hand and honed in on one of the officers.
“Yo man,” he said, as he walked by another officer standing just feet away.
The targeted officer immediately recognized the threat and drew his duty weapon in response, but the assailant continued his charge without hesitation.
“Put it down! Put it down!” the officer commanded, as his attacker raised his right arm above his head.
The officer rapidly fired approximately seven rounds, and the suspect collapsed to the ground behind the van’s rear doors.
“Shots fired! Shots fired! Male down,” another officer immediately notified over the police radio.
“Stay down!” the officer who discharged his weapon commanded, as the suspect rolled onto his back.
“You okay?” one of his fellow officers asked him.
“I might be stabbed, I’m not sure,” the officer calmly replied. “Keep that f - - - - - g gun out – you cover him!”
As the officers placed the suspect into handcuffs, his blood saturated his shirt and began pooling on the pavement, the video showed.
“Male is shot. We’re okay. I’m alright, but I might be stabbed,” the officer updated over the police radio.
The officer was rushed to a local hospital with a stab wound to his torso, prosecutors said.
He was treated and released.
The suspect, later identified as 32-year-old Timothy Deal, was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
An autopsy confirmed that he died from “multiple gunshot wounds,” according to prosecutors.
The Atlantic County Major Crimes Unit is leading the investigation into the incident.
“The death of Timothy Deal, while tragic, was in response to his unprovoked attack on a police officer with a knife," Atlantic County Prosecutor Damon Tyner said in the press release. “We must not lose sight of the fact that a sworn police officer reported to the scene of an accident to protect the public, and was attacked for no apparent reason.
"The officer defended himself and protected the public from untold harm," Tyner continued. "This incident reminds us of how fragile life can be and we should all be thankful that no innocent bystanders were injured.”
Approximately 100 protesters gathered outside the Public Safety Building in the wake of Deal’s death, and demanded that police release bodycam footage of the incident, The Press of Atlantic City reported.
Some held signs that read, “Stop Gun Violence,” and “Timothy Deal RIP.”
“All of us loved him, and he loved everybody out here. We’re out here for Tim, to get justice for Tim,” Deal’s mother, Gloria, told the news outlet. “They killed the wrong kid.”
“We’re going to make them release everything,” Deal’s father, Michael King, agreed.
Deal’s sister, Taria King, refused to believe that her brother carried out the attack.
“He’s not that kind of person,” King told The Press of Atlantic City. “He would not do that. That’s not his personality. It’s not his demeanor.”
You can watch bodycam footage of the dramatic encounter in the two videos below: