BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Nicholas Squire, the 22-year-old man who FAU Police say lunged at officers with a knife, was allegedly taking part in a “suicide by cop” scheme.
But whether one of the FAU police officers responded appropriately when he pulled his gun and fired at Squire, striking him, is a question being reviewed by the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s office.
According Boca Raton Police which conducted the initial investigation, an air conditioner repair man working on an a/c unit on the roof of a building at FAU was approached by Squire and asked for a cigarette.
Upon leaving the roof, the repairman told an FAU representative that Squire was there. That representative called police.
When FAU officers arrived, they engaged Squire who both reported was acting strange, like he was “on a narcotic.” Police ordered him to sit down. He did not.
Then, according to police interviews, Squire lunged at officers with a six inch “Gerber” knife.
One of the FAU officers, Bill Hernandez, told Boca Police that he did not know what the “black object” was and responded by firing his police-issed Taser.
However, FAU Officer Gary Grande told investigators that he knew the object was a knife and fired two shots at Squire from his gun, “striking his body.” Squire immediately fell to the ground.
Whether Grande over-reacted, or Hernandez under-reacted is under review by the State Attorney’s Office.
Squire was transported to Delray Medical Center where he was allegedly told police that he wanted to be killed by an officer. According to the affidavit:
“He stated that he climbed up a tree onto the FAU building roof. When he was confronted by the officers, he wanted it to be a “suicide by cop” situation. He removed his knife from his pocket and lunged, about two steps, toward the officer with the gun. He wanted the officer to shoot him in the head.”
Squire is charged with aggravated assault on a police officer with a deadly weapon.
According to the affidavit of probable cause issued for Squire’s arrest,
Boca Raton Police have charged Squire with “Assault on an Officer.”
He remains in Delray Medical Center.