Arlington police released body camera footage of the fatal shooting of a man who reportedly pointed a weapon at officers Saturday evening.
Nicholas Walker, 31, was shot and killed by officers when he pointed a replica BB gun at them, Arlington police said in a press release Sunday. Officers thought the BB gun was a handgun, police said.
“We don’t have enough facts to say this was a traditional suicide by cop,” Lt. Christopher Cook said at a Sunday evening press conference. “It looked like a real Beretta handgun.”
But Cook did say that police think the shooting was justified. The suspect, Walker, had indicated by text messages sent Friday that he wanted to kill himself, Cook said.
Walker was placed in custody and taken to the hospital for a mental health evaluation on Friday, Cook said.
Walker was released that night by officials at John Peter Smith Hospital at an unknown time and returned to an address in the 700 block of Thomas Chapel Drive.
Police responded to the house about 6:30 p.m. Saturday when a man at the home called police and said Walker had assaulted him with a baseball bat. The caller got away from the house safely, but police said Walker refused to come out for more than an hour.
“The victim, an adult male, was assaulted in the front yard with a baseball bat,” Cook said.
The suspect was determined to be Walker and he would not come outside as directed, Cook said. Cook said police were able to make contact with the suspect by phone and also used a public address system to make contact.
“Unfortunately, he did not come outside at that point and we tried and wait him out,” Cook said.
An emergency arrest team was called to the scene and stationed near the front of the residence, where the garage was located. A loud noise was heard that sounded like the front door was opening, and Walker was seen leaving the house and walking out onto the front walkway about 8 p.m., Cook said.
Officers commanded Walker to get his hands up, Cook said, which can be heard on the video that was released.
“The suspect pulled what officers believed to be a handgun from his front of his waistband, took a shooting stance and pointed the gun at the officers,” Cook said.
Three officers shot at the suspect. He was pronounced dead at the scene from a gunshot wound to the head, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Police had been at Walker’s house Friday investigating an allegation of invasive recording of a child, police said in a press release. Walker made comments indicating he was suicidal, so police took him to the hospital Friday night. He was released prior to Saturday night’s alleged assault, police said.
The three officers who shot at Walker are patrol officers with the East and North districts, and the shooting was recorded on body cameras, police said. The officers have been placed on administrative leave during the investigation, which is standard procedure.