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Former Afghan Interpreter Fatally Shot By San Francisco Police After Charging at Officer With a Knife

A former Afghan interpreter for U.S. special forces was fatally shot by police in San Francisco after charging at an officer with a knife on Friday morning.

Police have now released video of the incident, which shows Ajmal Amani, 41, threatening several people with the large kitchen knife before police arrived.

“Amani was a former Afghan interpreter for U.S. special forces who had been shot several times during more than five years of service and struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder, his former lawyer, his case manager and a property manager told the San Francisco Chronicle,” a report from ABC News explains. “Amani was charged with assault with a deadly weapon in 2019 for allegedly slashing a city park ranger with a box cutter who said he appeared to be in an ‘altered mental state.'”

Following the incident with the park ranger, Amani was ordered to undergo mental health diversion. He completed that this year and was living in a hotel room rented out by the city.

On Friday morning, police were called to the hotel for a disturbance. Amani was reportedly “screaming and yelling and had a knife.” ABC News reports that his case manager had also called police, saying that he was having “a really bad episode.”

On Wednesday, police released the surveillance video and footage from officers’ body cameras. A man can be seen trying to fend him off with a broom.

Scott Grant, a deputy public defender who represented Amani, said he was “utterly devastated” by what happened and his client’s death.

“His tragic death is a failure of our systems of government here to support somebody who risked his life to support this country,” Grant told KTVU-TV.

Amani was shot in both the stomach and his leg. He succumbed to his injuries at a hospital.


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