The man who Phoenix police say hurled a hatchet at officers moments before those officers shot him has died.
Police said 42-year-old Isaac Lankisch went into another man’s apartment near Campbell and 27th avenues at about 8 p.m. Friday and took something.
After the homeowner confronted Lankisch and told him return the property, Lankisch began chasing the man with a knife and small ax, police said. Lankisch threw the ax and missed the victim, instead striking a hallway wall.
When the homeowner barricaded himself in the bathroom, police said Lankisch began chopping away at walls in the apartment.
Lankisch eventually left and the homeowner called 911. Two officers who were already at the apartment complex on an unrelated call, responded and called for backup.
“Shortly after 8:30 p.m., the original two officers were informed that Lankisch was on foot on Highland Avenue,” said Sgt. Tommy Thompson in a statement. “They went there and located him in front of some other apartments in the area of 2500 W. Highland, which east of the original call.”
Lankisch still had the hatchet in one hand and “an approximately 10-inch hunting type knife in the other hand,” he said.
“The officers drew their weapons and began giving verbal commands for him to drop the weapons and get on the ground, but he would not comply,” Thompson said.
Lankisch approached the officers, holding the knife and ax “in an offensive manner.”
After he got within about 10 feet of one of the officers, he threw the hatchet at them.
“That officer then fired at Lankisch, who was struck and fell to the ground,” Thompson said. “The officers rendered first aid until Phoenix Fire Department personnel arrived.”
Lankisch was taken to a nearby hospital where he died. No officers were injured.