Law enforcement officials in Indiana shot and killed a machete-wielding man Sunday night after he allegedly threatened to decapitate members of his family while suffering a “mental health episode.”
Kendall Darnell Gilbert, 40, was shot and killed by officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department after he allegedly “made threatening statements” while armed with a machete, the Indy Star reported. Officers had been called to the home after an unnamed elderly woman used an emergency alert button to report that someone was trying to kill her, the outlet stated. (RELATED: Prof Who Threatened Reporter With Machete Surrenders To Cops, Charged With ‘Menacing’ And ‘Harassment’)
Police say they have a history at the address and were familiar with the people involved from past interactions.
— IndyStar (@indystar) August 28, 2023
Lt. Shane Foley, a spokesperson for the police department, revealed that officers had been called to the home multiple times over the weekend prior to the fatal incident due to “troubling behavior” by one of the home’s occupants, the Indy Star reported. Foley did not specify whether the subject of the calls was Gilbert.
On Friday, a caller revealed to police that the man was schizophrenic and sending strange messages to members of the family, per the Star. On Saturday, police responded to a call reporting that the same man was destroying property in a bedroom of the home. Police returned to the home again later that same evening after the same man threatened to decapitate members of his family, the outlet stated.
“The male was still barricaded in his room,” Foley explained, according to the Indy Star. “Officers assisted family members with providing them with information on mental health resources, and since he was barricaded in the room, again, (he was) not a threat to others,” he continued, per the outlet.
On Sunday at approximately 5:20 p.m.. family members called police to report the man was hallucinating and threatening to burn down the house, according to the Star. Law enforcement officers advised family members to leave the home. At 6;45 p.m., the emergency alert came through with an elderly family member claiming a man was trying to kill her, the Indy Star reported.
“Crisis negotiators were able to make contact with the individual,” Foley stated, revealing that a psychologist from the crisis negotiation unit was assisting, according to the outlet. “Multiple negotiators spoke with the man, and unfortunately they were not able to have any meaningful communication with the individual throughout the incident,” he continued, per the Star.
Foley revealed that bag shots and tasers were used against Gilbert after negotiations failed at which point he rushed towards the officers with a machete, leading an officer to open fire, the Indy Star reported. “This is a tragic incident. This is not the outcome that anybody wanted. The officers and SWAT team took multiple steps to try and find alternatives besides deadly force,” Foley stated, according to the outlet.