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Man shot by police during confrontation

A Medford man is in stable condition after being shot by police during a suicidal subject response Sunday morning, Medford police said.

The 55-year-old man, who police are not naming for now, was ignoring commands from officers as he approached them with a knife in the backyard of a residence in the 100 block of Seroba Circle, according a news release from Medford police. Two officers deployed their tasers, and a third officer fired a shot, “almost simultaneously,” the release said.

Medford Fire-Rescue personnel, who were on scene after earlier helping officers gain entry to the residence, administered medical aid. The man underwent surgery and remained in stable condition at Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center Sunday afternoon, police said.

Three officers, out of the five who responded, were placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard protocol according to the release.

A family member of the man made the initial report at 9:40 a.m., saying that the man had told the relative he wanted to harm himself.

Responding officers received no answer at the door or on the man’s cell phone, police said. They found a blood trail that led toward the back of the residence and called for Medford Fire-Rescue personnel to assist with a forcible entry.

The man was standing inside, police said, but officers stayed outside and attempted to communicate with him. Seconds after the door was breached, the man approached officers, holding a hand behind his back, police said.

As officers backed up to a wooden fence in the backyard, the release said, the man revealed he was holding a knife in his hand and continued forward, despite officer commands. He dropped the knife and fell to the ground after being shot, the release said.

Scott Clauson, chief of Medford police, said that all three officers on leave have been through the department’s 40-hour crisis intervention training. One of the officers is an instructor, he said.

“They will take the next few days and we’re not requiring them to come to work on their shift,” he said.

Clauson will hold a press conference to discuss the incident Monday at 10:30 a.m. at the Medford Police Department Prescott room.

The case is being investigated by the Major Assault and Death Investigation Unit (MADIU), with Oregon State Police as the lead agency, the release said. The Jackson County District Attorney’s Office is assisting.

Once the investigation is complete, the case will be presented to a Grand Jury for review.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Kaylee Tornay at ktornay@rosebudmedia.com or 541-776-4497. Follow her on Twitter @ka_tornay.