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Officer shoots man wielding large butcher knife on Northside, police say

Officer T. Davis shot 39-year-old John Ritter after he wielded a large butcher knife on the Northside, according to JSO Chief of Investigations T.K. Waters.

A man is in the hospital Saturday after being shot by an officer on the Northside, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

At around 9:11 a.m., JSO said officers responded to what was believed to be an armed burglary located at Bayview Avenue and Lem Turner Road. Officers arrived and learned that it was an attempted armed robbery with a butcher knife, according to JSO Chief of Investigations T.K. Waters. 

First Coast News spoke to a man who said the man had approached him before the incident while holding a large butcher knife.

"He was talking about robbing somebody and sticking with a butcher knife," the witness said. "He had a butcher knife about a foot long." 

The witness said he saw the man run across Lem Turner Road before getting inside of a car.

"The way he was acting and the way he talked ... he wanted money," the witness said. "And he was gonna get it any way he could."

When officers approached the man, identified as 39-year-old John Ritter, he had a large butcher knife in his hand, Waters said. The man then fled the area on foot with an officer in pursuit of him.

"He was running back and forth, trying to get away from them," the witness said. "He then took off and went around the side of the building."

The officer, identified as T. Davis, was able to catch up to Ritter, who turned and faced Davis with the knife still in his hand, Waters said. 

Waters said Davis gave Ritter loud commands to drop the knife, but he did not comply, so Davis attempted to tase him. When the taser did not work, Waters said Davis fired one shot, striking Ritter in an undisclosed area.

Ritter was transported to a local hospital for treatment where he is in stable condition, according to Waters. No officers were injured during the altercation.

Waters said Davis was placed on leave while an investigation into the shooting is conducted. The State Attorney's Office is also investigating.

Charges are currently pending for Ritter, Waters said.


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