Police fatally shoot suspect who allegedly grabbed sergeant’s gun

Market and Eighth streets were closed Thursday while police investigated an officer-involved shooting. Michael Barba/S.F. Examiner

Market and Eighth streets were closed Thursday while police investigated an officer-involved shooting. Michael Barba/S.F. Examiner

A San Francisco police sergeant shot and killed a male suspect who allegedly tried to grab a gun from another sergeant in the mid-Market area early Thursday afternoon, Police Chief Greg Suhr has confirmed.

The incident unfolded just after 12 p.m. when two sergeants driving south on Eighth Street were flagged down by a construction worker at the southeast corner of Eighth and Market streets, who reported a man was throwing bottles near a building site, Suhr said.

The sergeants exited their car and a violent struggle ensued with the man. They were not able to handcuff the man, and at one point during the struggle the man reportedly managed to grab one of the sergeant’s guns.

At that point the officer screamed, “‘He’s getting my gun, he’s got my gun, shoot him,'” to the other sergeant, Suhr said.

The sergeant’s partner fired at least two shots, striking the suspect both times. The unidentified man, described by Suhr as in his late 20s, died at the scene.

Both sergeants were taken with facial injuries to local hospitals for treatment, Suhr said. One sergeant was knocked to the ground during the encounter and had knee injuries. Their identities have not been released.

Police said they have witnesses who can verify the story.

Coleogne Johnson, 47, of Pinole, was enjoying a meal across the intersection when he heard two gunshots, he said.

“I was sitting over here eating my lunch and all you hear was pop, pop,” Johnson said. “It was kind of scary.”

Construction workers building an apartment structure on Eighth and Market streets could be seen staring down at what appeared to be a body covered in a blanket. Several police cars converged around the object.

Just after 2 p.m., the body was loaded into a Medical Examiner’s van that pulled up to the scene. Homicide investigators were also present.

Market Street was closed to traffic between 7th and 9th streets after 12 p.m. The gates at Civic Center Muni Station were reportedly locked.

A San Francisco Medical Examiner's employee wheeled a body to their van after a San Francisco police sergeant shot and killed a male suspect who allegedly tried to grab a gun from another officer near 8th and Market streets Thursday, October 15, 2015. (Mike Koozmin/S.F. Examiner)

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A San Francisco Medical Examiner's employee wheeled a body to their van after a San Francisco police sergeant shot and killed a male suspect who allegedly tried to grab a gun from another officer near 8th and Market streets Thursday, October 15, 2015. (Mike Koozmin/S.F. Examiner)

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