A Rapid City man was fatally shot by a Rapid City Police officer Friday morning at an apartment building.
The man, whose name has not been released, was the only person injured.
Rapid City Police Chief Don Herdick told a news conference later in the morning that a single officer was sent in response to a report about 5:30 a-m of a man running through the hallways of the River Ridge Apartments.
Chief Hedrick said the officer let himself into the building using a key code and was immediately confronted by a knife-wielding man sprinting at him and got close enough for Hedrick to describe the confrontation as hand-to-hand combat.
The officer said he thought he might have been stabbed, so he drew his weapon and fired, hitting the man. He then immediately began treating the wound until medical personnel arrived.
The suspect was taken to Monument Health Rapid City Hospital by ambulance, but was later pronounced dead. Medical personnel determined the officer was uninjured, which Chief Hedrick said left him “very grateful.”
After the shooting, interviews with witnesses show the suspect had been stabbing himself before the officer arrived.
Hedrick said all indications point to the suspect attacking the officer but that the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation has now taken over the case, assisted by the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff Kevin Thom told the morning news conference the officer’s bodycam video has been reviewed and called it “chilling” how quickly the incident happened.
The DCI usually releases a report within 30 days of a police-involved shooting, sending it to the attorney general’s office which determines if the shooting was justified or if charges should be brought.