Police ID off-duty officer who shot scissor-wielding man in Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philadelphia police have identified the off-duty officer who shot a scissor-wielding man over the weekend.

It happened around 5:45 p.m. Saturday along the 2500 block of S. 7th Street.

Police say Officer Jason Santiago was in plainclothes and at the home of an acquaintance when the incident occurred.

"He and his friends heard some commotion outside and the sound of glass breaking," said Staff Inspector Sekou Kinebrew over the weekend.

Kinebrew said the man his 60s was breaking glass items in a recycling bin and began to throw the trash and glass bottles along the sidewalk.

Santiago confronted the man, asking him to stop throwing trash on the ground, police said.

That's when the man produced a pair of scissors and approached the officer, according to investigators.

"The officer did identify himself as a police officer. The male swung at the officer several times, the officer did discharge his privately owned semi-automatic 9 mm firearm," said Kinebrew.

Officials said Santiago fired his gun at least four times, striking the man three times, in the left wrist, left side of the chest and left leg. A pair of scissors were recovered at the scene.

"I was right over here when it happened, and I ran inside, and then I went down to see what happened," said Mark Semeriglia, from South Philadelphia. "I see the guy laying down on the ground."

Neighbors say the man is homeless and is well known in the neighborhood, however, police have not confirmed that information.

"Homeless guy, you see him all over, he never really bothers anybody," said Kai a neighbor who said he heard the shots fired.

Police said the man was taken to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital where he remains in critical condition.

Officials said Santiago was not hurt in the incident.

"As is the case with on-duty police-involved discharges, this off-duty officer discharge will be investigated by our Officer-Involved Shooting Investigations Unit, as well as our Internal Affairs Division in a bifurcated manner," stated Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw. "We are committed to conducting a thorough, objective, and transparent investigation, while upholding the tenets of due process for all involved."
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