Bodycam footage shows moment leading to ax-wielding man being shot by Jacksonville officer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office on Friday released police body-worn camera footage that was taken in April, when a man who was wielding an ax was shot and killed by an officer.

It happened on April 21, when the Sheriff’s Office said police were called to Morse Avenue just before 4 a.m. in response to a call “regarding a mentally ill individual.” Sheriff T.K. Waters, who at the time was JSO’s chief of investigations, said that initially, officers were unable to locate the man. He said officers came back around 11:30 a.m. following another call from neighbors.

That’s when, Waters said, officers made contact with Kevin Mahan, 43, who was in a wooded area.

LINK: (Discretion advised) Body cam footage shows man armed with hatchet shot by officer

“One of our officers at that point walked through through a wooded area of a small field where he saw the subject standing behind some woods holding a hatchet, a small ax,” Waters said. “He (the officer) announced ‘put the hatchet down.’ They announced three more times, ‘put the ax down.’”

The footage released Friday shows an officer, gun drawn, repeatedly yell for the man to drop the ax, as was originally explained by Waters. The video shows the man standing with the ax next to his head.

The officer fires one shot, striking the man and killing him — as was originally reported by JSO. No officers were injured.

According to Waters, Mahan had prior arrests, including possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, a drug arrest, a felony traffic arrest and a robbery arrest. Records show in 2013, Mahan was sentenced to three years in prison after he was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm. In 1998, Mahan was convicted on two counts of armed robbery and one count of attempted armed robbery.

Court records also show that back in December 2021, an officer was used a Taser on Mahan while trying to arrest him. The arrest came after a driver told police that Mahan tried to carjack him and verbally threatened to kill him at a Gate gas station on 103rd Street. Mahan pleaded no contest to resisting arrest and was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office no longer identifies officers involved in a shooting. A court ruling granted officers confidentiality under Marsy’s Law.

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