AUSTIN (KXAN) — Officers shot a suspect Friday morning when responding to a fatal stabbing in central Austin, according to the Austin Police Department.
Austin-Travis County EMS says a woman died on scene after being stabbed, and a male suspect was taken to Dell Seton Medical Center with critical life-threatening injuries following the shooting. Police say he is out of surgery.
“It is with obviously with great sadness that we lost someone today, but I can say from what I can understand our officers did everything they could when they got here to put an end to the threat that this suspect posed to this victim, but unfortunately the wounds were significant,” said APD interim Chief Brian Manley.
The incident happened in the 5000 block of Lynnwood Street, which is just west of Burnet Road. Police believe a neighbor called 911 at 6:38 a.m. to report a disturbance, and in the next few minutes described seeing the man stab the woman.
The first officer arrived to the courtyard of an apartment complex around 6:49 a.m., where he found the woman on the ground and the man nearby, Manley said, describing what appears on a body camera the officer was wearing.
“The officer gives repeated commands to this individual to ‘Drop it, drop it,'” Manley said. “The individual refuses to comply and he takes additional aggressive acts toward the female in this incident, and our officer fires his weapon.” Manley said officers tried to take him into custody and were able to do so after a struggle.
Police have not yet identified the victim or suspect. They will identify the officer who fired the shots in the coming days, and he has been placed on administrative leave per department policy. He is a 23-and-a-half year veteran of the force.
“This is not what the men and women of the Austin Police Department wake up each day and want to come and have to do, but it is part of the job and he was put in a situation where life was at risk,” Manley said. “So I know that will be something that he will have to deal with emotionally, but physically our officer is OK.”
Numerous investigations are going on at the scene, including the homicide unit, the officer-involved special investigation unit, the district attorney, internal affairs and the Austin Police Monitor. Representatives from the Austin Police Association were on scene as well.
Austin police say the incident happened outside a group home. It’s not clear whether the stabbing suspect and the woman attacked lived at the group home complex. It’s also not clear, at this point, how they knew each other.
According to Travis County, the property on Lynnwood is owned by Integral Care, the dba for Austin Travis County MHMR. Representatives tell KXAN, “Integral Care works to improve the lives of individuals living with mental illness, substance use disorder and intellectual and developmental disabilities.”