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Buffalo police release body camera video of man with knife shot by officers on Hertel Avenue

Posted at 5:53 AM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-16 22:17:44-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Buffalo police have released body camera video showing an incident Monday morning in which a man with a knife was shot by officers.

The video shows officers approaching the man, identified as 30-year-old Dominique Thomas of Buffalo, in a stairwell of a building on Hertel Avenue around 4:30 a.m. on Monday. The man is seen with a knife in the video, and officers can be heard several times asking him to put the knife down.

Officers decided to exit the building, but Thomas is seen following them. Officers continued to back up into the street, asking several more times that Thomas drop the knife.

Almost three minutes into the video, the man can be seen running towards the officers with the knife. At least two officers open fire, firing several rounds at the man, who falls onto the ground.

"The officers are taught to shoot to stop the threat," said Buffalo Police Commissioner Joe Gramaglia. "You have to look at the situation and how rapidly it escalates."

NOTE: 7 News has frozen part of the video due to its graphic nature, and muted several expletives in the video. Any portions of video edited by 7 News are labeled as such. Any additional editing, such as freeze frames and red circles highlighting the knife, were made by the Buffalo Police Department.

Thomas was transported to ECMC where he was initially listed in serious condition. His condition as of Thursday is not known. Charges are pending against him.

The officers were placed on administrative leave, per departmental regulations. They have now been identified as Phillip Edwards and Michael Ramos of D District. Edwards was hired in January 2015 and Ramos was hired in January 2020.

7 News asked retired Buffalo Police Captain Jeff Rinaldo to react to the body camera video.

"They are very dynamic situations. They're absolutely difficult for officers to deal with because they don't control it. The suspect and his actions control those situations. I think the officers should be commended for the number of times they tried to deescalate this."