Family members identified the man killed by San Jose police officers who they said was charging at them with a knife as a very distraught individual - something they didn't realize until his death.
It was the first officer-involved shooting of the year in San Jose.
Phillip Watkins, 23, was upset and seemingly suicidal, according to his mother, Sharon Watkins, who spoke to NBC Bay Area early Thursday morning. He went to the home in the 1300 block of Sherman Street about 5 p.m. on Wednesday where his fiance, 3-year-old daughter, mother and future mother-in-law were gathered and called 911, his mother said.
When police arrived, they said they found an man armed with a knife rushing at them outside.
Police Sgt. Heather Randol said the officers then fired their guns at the suspect, killing him, Randol said. Both officers had seven and eight years on the force respectively, and as is routine, are on paid administrative leave. They are officers from the department's gang suppression unit.
"They did order him to drop the knife. He did not," Randol said. "So they fired from their duty weapons, striking him at least one time."
Watkins' future mother-in-law, Faye Buchanan, said she saw the young man, a one-time De Anza College football player in 2012, walk toward police. But she said she didn't realize he had a knife until after the fact.
Watkins also didn't realize her son was in such a state." He was in an on-and-off relationship with his fiance and had just started a job at a Gilroy Walmart.
"I didn't have a clue," his mother said, regarding her son's depression. "I would have helped if I could."