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Man carrying Samurai sword killed by police in Saratoga Springs

(Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)


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SARATOGA SPRINGS — A police officer shot and killed a man who was wielding a Samurai sword Wednesday outside a restaurant.

About 9:40 a.m., two officers responded to a call of a "suspicious person" in the area of Crossroads Boulevard and Redwood Road, said Saratoga Springs spokesman Owen Jackson. A witness reportedly called after spotting a man carrying a Samurai sword.

"Early indications are there was some sort of weapon involved. Sometime during the incident, shots were fired, fatally wounding the suspect," he said.

Jackson did not know how many shots were fired. Both officers were placed on standard paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the Utah County Attorney's Office.

The name of the 22-year-old suspect was not immediately released.

The crime scene was spread out over four adjacent businesses, including a Panda Express restaurant on Redwood Road, a gas station and an auto parts store. Yellow police tape blocked off a large area along Redwood Road. All four businesses remained closed Wednesday afternoon. The incident reportedly began near a credit union and culminated at the restaurant.

Police said they don't believe the suspect had walked into any of the businesses.

Witnesses told reporters the man seemed distressed and suspicious.

"He wasn't talking to anybody at that point. We all kind of thought it was a weird situation," said Paul Cook, adding that he saw the man as he wandered between the businesses. "I'm glad that the officers took action because, from what I've heard, it could have been a lot worse."

Maya Herrera, who had stopped at the gas station to get a drink on her way to work, said she was frightened when she saw the sword the man was carrying, and she noticed that the man himself seemed scared.

"He looked pretty terrified. He was looking back over his shoulders and walking really fast," Herrera said. "It was a really long sword. It went from his shoulder to his hip."


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Pat Reavy

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