Lockport NY man commits suicide after police chase www.privateofficer.com
LOCKPORT NY May 10 2012 — A 35-year-old Lockport man took his own life in front of several witnesses Tuesday morning outside a Roosevelt Drive home after a police chase despite officers’ efforts to stop him.
Joshua Verity was taken to Eastern Niagara Hospital-Lockport by the Lockport Fire Department Rescue where he was pronounced dead a short time after his self-inflicted injuries.
Lockport Police received a 911 call at 9:38 a.m. from a woman reporting a man was trying to harm himself with a butcher knife. Police found Verity on Lincoln Avenue and a chase ensued on the busy street. Officers Mike Stover and Mike Wasik caught up with him after a foot chase of four to five blocks, on Hoover Parkway.
Verity cut himself with the knife while running. He finally stopped outside the residence and repeatedly stabbed himself in the neck area despite officers’ pleas to stop.
As neighbors looked on, a department hostage negotiator, who was one of the police officers in the pursuit, attempted to open a dialogue, according to Police Chief Larry Eggert. Police tried to get close enough to disarm Verity, but were unable to approach him due to his extremely violent action.
At one point Verity came toward an officer with the knife, but officers were able to persuade him to back off. Police continued to talk with Verity, but he instead slashed his throat with the knife.
Police employed a Taser, but despite the severe wound, Verity continued to fight off police. He was finally restrained and medical care was given to him at the scene. Police radio transmissions indicate they requested Mercy Flight to land nearby but instead he was transported to ENH where he was pronounced dead at 10:15 a.m.
“Our core mission is to save lives. We were trying to get him some help,” said Eggert noting the effect on the officers. “The guy wouldn’t be talked to.”
Verity was involved in a fatal accident on Route 31 in Cambria on April 15. He was a passenger in a car driven by Christine George of Niagara Falls. She was ejected from the car during the rollover accident and died.
In August, 2008, Joshua’s younger brother, Jonathan Verity, died when he fell at the gorge behind Urban Towers after a concert.