State Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal released the video along with others recorded in the Dec. 27, 2020 Clifton police encounter with Antwan Whitlock,, 35, of Union Township at a Route 3 Howard Johnson's.
Whitlock, who wasn’t struck by gunfire as he ran down the hallway later stabbed himself in the chest when other SWAT team officers caught up to him, Grewal said.
It began when three Clifton officers responded to a report of a guest having a "mental health crisis" at the hotel on the highway's westbound side at 5:18 a.m., Grewal said.
They were joined by EMTs from the Clifton Fire Department, he said.
The officers first tried to talk with Whitlock through the closed door of the fourth-floor room where he was staying before they eventually forced their way in, Grewal said.
"Once the door was open, the officers had a brief interaction at the doorway with [Whitlock], who was armed with two knives," the attorney general said.
Whitlock slashed an officer in the face as he ran into the hallway, prompting two officers to fire their weapons in his direction, Grewal said.
That can be seen in this video: Whitlock Incident (Clifton)
They missed as he ran down the hall and through a fire door, Grewal said.
"He remained in that area of the hotel, armed with the two knives," the attorney general said.
A Passaic County SWAT team found Whitlock in the fourth-floor hallway.
A SWAT team member tried firing a Taser at him before Whitlock stabbed himself in the chest with one of the knives shortly after 7 a.m., Grewal said.
The officer who sustained a knife wound to his face was treated at St. Joseph’s and released, he said.
Whitlock also was treated at the hospital before eventually being transferred to the Bergen County Jail.
He remained there Thursday pending further court action on charges that include aggravated assault, resisting arrest and weapons possession.
State law and his own guidelines require Grewal’s office to investigate police-involved shootings and to release such recordings in order to “promote the fair, impartial and transparent investigation of police use of force investigations,” the attorney general said.
Grewal released four videos and one audio recording. Two of the video were captured by surveillance cameras in different hallways of the hotel. Footage from a Taser that was fired and another that wasn’t also are included, along with a 911 call made by Whitlock that prompted the emergency response, as well as follow-up call to the hotel by the 911 operator.
All are collected here: Whitlock Incident (Clifton): All Recordings
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