Glendale police fatally shoot man armed with long forceps


Glendale police identified a man who was fatally shot after attacking an officer with foot-long metal forceps.

Police on Tuesday released audio of a security guard calling authorities around 5 p.m. Monday because Matthew Joseph Rasmussen, 31, was swinging the scissors-like object outside a fast-food restaurant near 43rd and Olive avenues.

Three police officers arrived on the scene and tried to talk to the armed man.

However, police said Mr. Rasmussen ignored commands to drop the forceps so one of the officers tried to detain him.

While the officer and Mr. Rasmussen were on the ground, police said Mr. Rasmussen was swinging and trying to stab the officer with the forceps.

Police said another officer who was in fear of his safety shot Mr. Rasmussen.

He was taken to the hospital in extremely critical condition and later died.

Police said the incident is under investigation.

According to the Maricopa County Superior Court, Mr. Rasmussen had been charged with aggravated assault on an officer and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon for an incident in January. However, the charges appear to have been dismissed due to mental incompetency.

According to minute entries filed in July, the court found "no substantial probability that Defendant will be restored to competency within 21 months after the date of the original finding of incompetency."

The court had ordered for Mr. Rasmussen to be admitted into Desert Vista Behavioral Health Center for in-patient evaulation.

Mr. Rasmussen had been enrolled with Partners in Recovery, which has locations in Phoenix, Gilbert, Glendale, Mesa, Peoria and Wickenburg.

He has had other run-ins with the law, between 2012 and 2014 that included several resisting arrest and aggravated assault charges.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.