Bodycam video shows suicidal Fort Worth woman pick up knife, ask officer to shoot her
The Fort Worth Police Department on Thursday released body-camera footage of an officer who shot a suicidal woman who held a knife in her apartment.
The woman — 20-year-old Kaitlyn Balogun — was shot in the hip and was taken to a hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries, according to police. She has been released from the hospital and booked into jail on suspicion of aggravated assault on a public servant.
When Balogun opened her door on Sunday, the officer is heard in the video telling her, “What’s going on? Talk to me.” Balogun then ran to pick up a knife that was on the floor, the video shows.
The officer backed up and drew her handgun and Balogun walked toward the officer while holding the knife and repeatedly said, “Please shoot me.”
The officer is then heard telling Balogun, “I don’t want to shoot you” and repeatedly tells her to drop the knife.
The video shows the officer fire her gun at Balogun one time. Balogun dropped the knife and fell backward in the apartment.
The officer immediately went into the apartment to provide aid. A second officer who had just arrived went up to the apartment to assist.
Police responded to Balogun’s apartment when she called 911 and reported that she was trying to kill herself and was “bleeding out,” according to Police Chief Neil Noakes.
The Internal Affairs Unit responded to the scene after the shooting. The Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney’s Office is also investigating, and the case will be referred to a grand jury, which is standard procedure.
“That is one of the most difficult situations an officer can find themselves in, especially when they initially responded to the call thinking there was someone that needed medical aid and they were there to try to provide that aid,” Noakes said at a press conference Thursday.
Police ask the public to contact mental health resources if they know anyone facing a crisis.
“The last thing we want to do is have to use our duty weapons on anyone,” Noakes said. “So it comes down to a point of trying to reason with the person, trying to get this young lady to drop the knife that she was holding, and there’s also the consideration of that officer protecting her own life. That’s a difficult decision.”
Noakes asked the public to pray for Balogun and her loved ones.
“Pray for this young lady, pray for her family, pray for the officer that was involved, and pray for her family as well. This doesn’t just impact one person. It’s impacting many people,” Noakes said.
In 2023, Fort Worth police officers have shot six civilians in the city. In each case the person held a weapon as he or she was shot. Two died. Four of the cases appear to have involved a mental health crisis.
▪ On Jan. 7, Robert Bradshaw, 37, was shot in the 3500 block of Wedgworth Road South. He brandished a machete and charged at officers as they were preparing to stun him, police have said. Bradshaw died.
Bradshaw’s mother called 911 to report that her son was possibly armed with a knife, police have said.
▪ On Jan. 21, Hector Galvan, 35, was shot in the 4900 block of Rutland Avenue. Galvan survived. As he ran from officers, Galvan pulled a gun from his pocket, fell and pointed the gun at an officer, surveillance video shows.
A woman called 911 to report a domestic disturbance.
▪ On March 4, a 29-year-old man was shot in the 13000 block of Park Vista Boulevard. The man survived.
As the man walk toward officers, he reached and gripped what police learned after the shooting was a pepper-spray gun.
Officers were responding to 911 callers who reported seeing a man who appeared to be in distress, erratic and yelling in a field.
▪ On March 14, Robert Ramos, 64, was shot in the 5600 block of Wedgworth Road. He fired a handgun at an officer outside a residence. Ramos survived.
Ramos’ wife called 911 to report he was intoxicated, making threats and was armed with a handgun.
▪ On May 13, Daniel Gutierrez, 57, was shot in the 2900 block of Northwest 21st Street. He fired a gun during a standoff and domestic disturbance at his residence, police have said. Gutierrez died.
Gutierrez’s wife called 911 to report the domestic disturbance.
On May 22, Balogun was shot in the 5900 block of Greenspoint Drive. She picked up a knife when the officer arrived and approached her. The officer “perceived a deadly threat,” police said in a news release.