BELLEVUE, Wash. — The family is grieving the death of a man shot and killed by Bellevue police earlier this month.
On December 5th, witnesses at the scene told KIRO 7 that 44-year-old Joseph Ejeh was acting erratic and came into LA Fitness holding a knife.
When police arrived, Joseph allegedly advanced toward them with a weapon in his hand.
Bellevue Police told KIRO 7 that an officer shot Joseph multiple times. Officers administered first aid and CPR to Joseph before medics arrived, but he died at the scene.
“I was shocked. And I was like, I don’t know if they picked the wrong person. It could be Joseph,” said Joseph’s sister, Lilian Eje. .
“They shot him four times. He didn’t have a gun. Even if he had a knife, he has to get really close to you with the knife,” Lillian said.
Lillian believes there could have been another way to deal with the problem without killing her brother.
“They didn’t use a Taser at all. They didn’t try to dissuade him or shoot him anywhere in the arm or leg,” she explained. “I think four shots was a little too much because he was holding something like a knife.”
Witnesses said Joseph appeared unstable at the time. Lillian said it looked very unlike him.
“I just want to know the truth. And I don’t want him to be portrayed as something he’s not. It’s a shame enough that he’s gone. Because that’s not the truth, that’s who he is. I don’t want people to think that,” she said.
She told KIRO 7 that Joseph moved to Seattle from Nigeria in 2016. He was looking for new opportunities and a better life.
He had no taste for violence. That’s the weird part. There are some things he couldn’t see because he couldn’t stand the violence. I can’t believe he’s going to end up like this. I just can’t explain it,” Lillian explained.
She was heartbroken that whatever Joseph was going through had to end like this.
“It hurts. We bury him. We move on. But every day something happens and you just have to deal with it. And it’s not enough that he’s gone,” she said. said.
The Bellevue police officer who shot and killed a man has been placed on administrative leave.
The King County Independent Investigation Team is currently conducting the investigation.