Keith Porch

Mansfield Police Dept. Chief Keith Porch answers questions from media members Thursday evening after the second officer-involved shooting of the summer.

MANSFIELD -- A man armed with a knife who was shot by Mansfield police inside a Wood Street apartment complex Thursday evening was pronounced dead at 7:45 p.m., according to Chief Keith Porch.

The Two Mansfield police officers involved in the shooting were placed on paid administrative leave per department policy, pending an investigation, the chief said.

Both the suspect and a stabbing victim, a 31-year-old man, were transported to OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital. The condition of the man who was stabbed was not known, Porch said during a 9 p.m. meeting with media at the police station.

Neither officer, Mark Boggs and Clay Blair, were injured, according to the chief, who said it was the first officer-involved shooting for either man. Boggs joined the MPD in 2016 and Blair in 2019.

The chief declined to identify the suspect shot by police or the stabbing victim, whom he said was stabbed multiple times. A copy of police radio traffic released by MPD indicated the victim was stabbed in the chest and the suspect had multiple gunshot wounds.

According to Porch, officers were dispatched to the apartment complex at 300 Wood St. at 5:28 p.m. after an abandoned 9-1-1 call. The two officers heard someone yelling for help and encountered a man with a knife outside an apartment.

He said the officers told the suspect to drop the knife, an order he refused as he advanced towards the apartment window that he began to break out.

Porch said one of the officers used a Taser, which had no effect on the suspect.

"The suspect then began to enter the apartment through the broken window, while still armed with the knife, all while a victim was still yelling for help inside," the chief said.

He said officers fired their guns at the suspect as he was re-entering the apartment. The chief said he didn't know if the suspect was hit during the initial gunfire.

"Officers then forced entry into the apartment at which time the suspect again confronted the officers with a knife, resulting in the officers having to fire their weapons, striking the suspect," Porch said.

One of the officers reported "shots fired" at 5:39 p.m.

Porch said the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation was called to the scene since it's an officer-involved shooting. BCI is the investigative arm of the Ohio Attorney General's office.

"It's important to me that a third party investigate this, thus removing the involvement of the Mansfield police department," Porch said. "I want to be as transparent with these types of incidents as I can."

The chief said he contacted Richland County Prosecutor Gary Bishop, who would make the decision regarding police investigation of the stabbing itself.

"I would be merely guessing that Mansfield police would continue with the investigation of the stabbing, but ultimately that's a decision the prosecutor would make," Porch said.

The chief declined to say if the stabbing suspect was alone in the apartment when the incident occured.

"I can't comment on that. I don't know for sure," Porch said.

The chief declined to say why the Taser was ineffective on the suspect.

"I would be merely guessing. There are numerous factors (involved) as to why a Taser would not be effective," Porch said.

Mansfield police officers are not wearing body-cameras.  MPD ordered 16 cameras five months ago, thanks to a $50,000 grant from the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services. Those cameras have not yet been received.

Porch said the in-car cameras in the police cruisers did capture some of the events outside the apartment, which he said would be made public.

It's the second officer-involved shooting of the summer for the MPD. Officer Jordan Moore was placed on paid administrative leave June 16 after he shot a Columbus resident suspected to be involved in an earlier shooting incident.

In that incident, police allege the suspect pulled a gun before Moore shot him. BCI is continuing to investigate that shooting, the results of which will be turned over to the county prosecutor's office for review.

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City editor. 30-year plus journalist. Husband. Father of 3 grown sons and also a proud grandpa. Prior military journalist in U.S. Navy, Ohio Air National Guard. -- Favorite quote: "Where were you when the page was blank?"