Police believe officers ‘acted appropriately’ after man, 52, fatally

A 52-year-old man has been fatally shot by police in Townsville after he allegedly approached officers while armed with knives. 

Queensland Police were called to a home on Bel Air Avenue at Kirwan just at 4.40pm on Friday to reports a man was threatening to self harm. 

First aid and CPR was provided to the man by paramedics, but he died at the scene. 

The incident is being investigated by the Ethical Standards Command on behalf of the State Coroner and will be subject to oversight by the Crime and Corruption Commission. 

Townsville District Acting Chief Superintendent Chris Lawson told reporters the man allegedly advanced towards officers while armed with knives, about 15 minutes after police arrived.

“As a result, police fired their service firearms at the male, hitting the male,” he said at a media conference on Saturday. 

“As soon as he was hit, first aid was provided and unfortunately a short time later after the arrival of QAS, he was pronounced deceased.”

The incident was caught on body-worn footage and will be available to Coroner and Ethical Standards Command as part of the investigation. 

About five to six police officers initially attended the scene, including an acting sergeant and senior constables, Superintendent Lawson said. 

He was not able to elaborate further about what happened, as the exact circumstances surrounding the incident are yet to be established.

At this stage Superintendent Lawson was “confident” the officers had “acted appropriately”. 

“Our use of force policy is pretty clear that you use whatever use of force you consider necessary to resolve the incident and at the minimum level possible,” he said. 

“So obviously, I can’t comment exactly what occurred yesterday, but those will all form part of how our policy interacted with what occurred yesterday.”

Police have also spoken with the man’s family. 

“Obviously, our thoughts go out to the family involved because we don’t want to see people being hurt and we don’t want to see people dying so we want to resolve these incidents as peacefully as possible.”

Superintendent Lawson said support had been provided to the all the officers involved. 

A crime scene has been declared and investigations are ongoing.

If you need help, you can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit, or Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636 or

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