Man brandishing machete killed by police at University of Colorado

2016-10-06 10:56
Emergency personnel and police work the scene of the shooting near the Champions Centre on the University of Colorado, Boulder campus. (Paul Aiken/Daily Camera via AP)

Emergency personnel and police work the scene of the shooting near the Champions Centre on the University of Colorado, Boulder campus. (Paul Aiken/Daily Camera via AP)

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Boulder – Police shot and killed a machete-wielding man on Wednesday who refused to drop the weapon after threatening someone at the University of Colorado in Boulder, authorities said.

The unidentified man brandished the machete during an altercation in the parking lot of a sports complex and then went inside a building, campus police spokesperson Scott Pribble said.

Two officers, one from the university and one from the city, fired shots after confronting the man in a stairwell and ordering him to drop the weapon.

"He refused and it was at that time for public safety that shots were fired," Pribble said.

An investigation was underway to determine more details.

Melissa Zak, chief of university police, said she believes the officers faced a life-threatening situation, and it would be unfair to second guess their decision to open fire.

She declined to say if the suspect was a student, had a criminal history or mental health problems.

Hours after the shooting, police responded to a report of an active shooter at the student union and concluded it was false.

The sports complex and University Memorial Centre, home of the campus bookstore and cafeteria, were closed as police investigated both events.

In both instances, the university sent text alerts to students, faculty and staffers telling them to take protective action, but classes continued.

Since those groups are spread across campus or may not even be there, authorities said they leave it to people to decide for themselves how to best respond to possible threats.

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