A man brandishing a samurai sword severely injured a sheriff deputy before being fatally shot by a second deputy at the scene. The samurai sword-wielding man was threatening family members with a knife before the deputies arrived on the scene. Upon arrival, the man had obtained the sword and proceeded to attack the deputies despite being pummeled with non-lethal bean bag throwing weapons.
NFW Daily News reports that the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Department sent deputies to the scene of an altercation involving 22-year-old Gordon Talmadge Kimbrell and two family members. The man’s family say he was threatening them with knives after he came home from work drunk. Kimbrell’s mother says her son began acting erratically after consuming half a bottle of rum.
When Deputy Matthew Ray and Sgt. Brian Miller arrived to defuse the situation, Kimbrell brandished a samurai sword. The deputies says the drunk man refused to put down the sword despite numerous requests to do so by Ray. Instead, Kimbrell attacked Ray hitting him with the large sword several times. According to ABC News, Ray was sent to the hospital with serious injuries from the sword attack.
After hitting Ray with the sword, Sgt. Miller opened fire against the man “in order to protect Deputy Ray.” Both Ray and Kimbrell were taken to the hospital; however, Kimbrell later died from his gunshot wounds.
ABC notes that not only did the sheriff’s deputies tell Kimbrell to put the sword down numerous times, the pair even attempted to use non-lethal force in the form of a high-powered bean bag throwing gun prior to Miller shooting him with his service weapon. Miller says he had no other choice but to shoot the man as he had already attacked Ray with the sword.
Deputy Ray is now listed in good condition at the hospital after undergoing surgery. The Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Department says that Ray is in the process of “recovering from a serious injury to an extremity” but did not specify which extremity was injured in the melee. Sgt. Miller was not harmed in the attack, but is currently on administrative leave as the sheriff’s department does an internal investigation of the use of lethal force in this case.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is also investigating whether or not the shooting of Kimbrell was justified.
What do you think about lethal force being used against the samurai sword-wielding Kimbrell? Since Kimbrell refused to put down the sword and subsequently attacked Deputy Ray, was lethal force justified?
[Photo by Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images]