Witnesses to fatal shooting say LMPD gave suspect no time to drop weapon

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- We're hearing another side of the story tonight, after officers shot and killed a man early yesterday morning. Some of the witnesses say they're left with questions after watching the violent confrontation.

The Jefferson County Coroner's office says Darnell Wicker, 57, died around 2 a.m. Monday of multiple gunshot wounds to his torso, upper right extremity and lower extremities. We don't know exactly how many times he was shot.

The Louisville Metro Police Public Integrity Unit has taken over the investigation and two witnesses say the officers were at fault. We should warn you that some of the video in this story is graphic.

Here's what police say happened: officers were responding to a domestic violence call when Wicker came outside of an apartment armed with a knife and a tree saw. 

"He came outside -- he came out the door and was holding a knife in his hand, he started kind of swinging it around a little bit and he kind of came at us and so we shot," an officer can be heard explaining on the video.

Now, two women who were at the scene -- Anita Jones and Denita Jones -- are describing what they saw.

Anita Jones was Wicker's girlfriend.

"They just ran up past him -- around him -- and just said, 'Drop your weapon!' Pow! Pow! Pow! Pow!" Anita Jones said. "He had no chance to drop the weapon."

"The officers jumped out, came around, pushed her out of the way," said Denita Jones. "I was far enough over here that he ran beside me, pushed her out of the way, said, 'Ma'am move!' ran up, the other one went that way. 'Put it down!' Pop! Pop! Pop!" 

For both, questions linger about why none of the officers tried first aid on Wicker after he was shot.

"They stood there beside me laughing worrying about if the cops were going to be short now because three cops were in a shooting. and all they was worried about is if they were going to be short," said Denita Jones said.

EMTs arrived at the scene nine minutes after the shooting. 

Police Chief Steve Conrad said on Monday he has questions of his own. 

"It is only through that thorough investigation that we will be able to understand and fully determine whether or not these officers provided the appropriate level of aid," Conrad said.

The officers who fired the shots are Taylor Banks and Beau Gadegaard. Gadegaard says in the video that he did not have his camera on when the shooting happened. He turns it on a few minutes after. 

According to policy, Gadegaard will have to explain why. 

"I was the person who actually had called them, and I didn't want that to actually happen," Denita Jones said. "That was my thing. I just wanted the situation to be okay."

Jones says she called 911 to get the man to leave the apartment. 

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