Exactly what authorities looking to calm tensions in Ferguson, Mo., didn't want to happen: Two St. Louis police officers shot and killed a man wielding a knife this afternoon, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. City police chief Sam Dotson said the man took energy drinks and pastries from a convenience store and was followed outside by the store owner, who asked him to pay, reports KSDK-TV. At that point, the man threw the items to the ground. Dotson says St. Louis alderwoman Dionne Flowers witnessed the encounter. "The store owner and the alderwoman said the suspect was armed with a knife, acting erratically, pacing back and forth in the street, talking to himself," said Dotson.
Officers arrived and ordered the man to the ground, but he instead walked toward them, reached for his waistband, and yelled, "Shoot me, kill me now," said Dotson. (Witnesses confirm the language, reports Fox 2 Illinois.) After the officers drew their weapons and ordered the man to stop, he pulled out the knife and came at them, said Dotson. The officers opened fire from about 3 feet away. The unidentified 23-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene, and neither officer was injured. The shooting took place in north St. Louis, about 4 miles from Ferguson, notes KSDK. A crowd was gathering at the scene.