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HEROES: Hackensack Police Subdue Distraught Man Wielding Kitchen Knife

Hackensack police
Hackensack police Photo Credit: Cecilia Levine

A crying and shaking Hackensack man who’d already cut himself several times refused to drop a bloody kitchen knife when a trio of city officers found him.

Sgt. Michael Capone and Officers Mark Carrillo and Stanislav Tovbin found the man “visibly distraught” after a 911 call brought them to a Lodi Street home Wednesday morning, Detective Capt. Darren DeWitt said.

He'd already cut his neck several time when the officers repeatedly asked him to put down the knife, the captain said.

He refused.

“With disregard for their own safety and with concern that [he] would hurt himself further, the officers moved in unison towards him,” DeWitt said.

Carrillo grabbed his right hand, which was clutching the knife, and Capone and Tovbin took from him after a brief struggle, the captain said.

The man “continued to kick and struggle with the officers as they summoned an ambulance” and eventually was taken away without further incident, DeWitt said.

He was hospitalized with wounds that weren’t considered life-threatening and undergoing a psychological evaluation.

“Those officers showed tremendous restraint and professionalism during those tense minutes,” DeWitt said. “They put their own safety at risk, and, when it was all done, they were just as happy that the person is getting the help that he needs.”

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