By: Nicole Ford, Jessica Guay, Briana Smith
BUTLER, Pa. (KDKA) -- A man was shot and killed after police say he stabbed a Butler officer multiple times with a knife on Tuesday.
According to State Police, Butler City Police received a 911 call about a man who was acting erratically and jumping in and out of traffic on the 300 block of West Jefferson Street just before 7 a.m.
"Next thing you know, I hear a man screaming. I'm just thinking, 'this is Butler, that's how it is,'" said J.D. Marley, who lives nearby.
Police say the officer arrived and immediately encountered the man, identified as 35-year-old John Ebberts. Police say a struggle ensued and the officer was stabbed multiple times before he took out his gun, shooting and killing Ebberts.
"It breaks my heart when things like this happen. There are a lot of people with mental health problems who need help and he was obviously one of them," Marley said, referring to Ebberts.
Ebberts was known around town as the neighbor who was always walking up and down the streets and Tuesday was no different. The 911 call came in, an officer answered the call and within two minutes, police say Ebberts stabbed that officer and that officer shot Ebberts.
The police officer, a 27-year-old Marine veteran who has been with the department for three years, was taken to the hospital. Police say he's undergoing surgery and is in critical condition. His name has not been released.
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"All of these cops here are with the community. Butler City, township and state -- they are with the community. They don't want to see this happen and I know for a fact they don't want to take someone's life," said Daniel Linhart from Butler.
Lining the streets were witnesses, one of which was Ebberts' husband Joe. He tells KDKA Nicole's Ford his husband suffered mental health issues but was compassionate and loving. As he sits at the spot Ebberts died, he says he wished it ended differently and Ebberts got the help he needed. He says he doesn't blame the officer for what happened but feels there should be more training on how to handle mental health cases.
The Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 91 Allegheny County wrote on Facebook: "Sending our Thoughts and Prayers to our Brother Butler Officer that was stabbed last night and is in UPMC Presbyterian Hospital!"
State police say that the investigation is active and ongoing but there aren't any public safety concerns at this time.
Stay with KDKA for more on this developing story.
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