NYPD officers describe tense encounter with man who entered precinct with knife

NEW YORK (WABC) -- An emotionally disturbed man walked into an NYPD stationhouse in Brooklyn Sunday morning brandishing a long knife.

Officers surrounded him and took him down with stun guns, and they are being trained more frequently to deal with these kind of encounters with a non-lethal response.

Police say 26-year-old Starlin Tineo entered the 75th Precinct creating a tense situation for officers and innocent people.

"As you see it is a very confined area," said NYPD Lt. Burt Antoine. "We gave as much space as we possibly could."

Lt. Antoine was on duty at the time when his officers first spotted Tineo just inside the precinct's front door.

"He did not say anything at the time," said Antoine. "We quickly engaged, pulled out our firearms."

Deputy Inspector John Mastronardi, the commanding officer of the 75, points out this is when critical training is put to the test.

"They are immediately required to isolate and contain the individual from either harming himself or other officers, and then we are required to take a level of action where it is less lethal.," said Mastronardi.

Yoselin Lopez tells Eyewitness News that her son had stopped taking five different psychiatric medicines recently and that he can become violent and unpredictable.

"Does he want to hurt himself?", we asked. "No, he hears voices," she said.

After civilians were moved out of harm's way, officers are seen on video surrounding Tineo with weapons drawn. Two of the officers had also drawn tasers.

"I gave the command to tase him," said Antoine. "The officers successfully deployed that taser and we were able to subdue him."

After he fell to the ground, officers took Tineo into custody and he was taken to Brookdale Hospital for evaluation.

"When we subdued him he did say, 'why didn't you shoot me, I wanted to be shot'", said Mastronardi.

Officials say this type of situation is a serious issue and a challenge that officers are facing every day.

"Last year there were 160,000 radio runs involving emotionally disturbed persons and we respond to that," said NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill. "There has to be a holistic approach to that."

And with an outcome where neither the individual nor the officers are seriously injured, "it was a fortunate situation and again now he is getting the help he needs," saidn Antoine.

"These cops reacted quickly," tweeted NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan. "Though prepared for the worst, they delivered a safe outcome for everyone. Well done!"


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