Man shot by Kalamazoo cops had fake gun

The scene of an officer-involved shooting in Kalamazoo on S. Burdick Street near W. Dutton Street. (Photo courtesy LaDonna via ReportIt)
The scene of an officer-involved shooting in Kalamazoo on S. Burdick Street near W. Dutton Street. (Photo courtesy LaDonna via ReportIt)

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — The rape suspect who was shot and killed by Kalamazoo Public Safety officers Friday night was brandishing a fake gun.

An investigative source with knowledge of the case confirmed the information to 24 Hour News 8.

Public Safety Chief Jeff Hadley has not responded to a Saturday morning email about the matter. Assistant Chief Donald Webster said no information would be released until Monday and referred requests for comment to Hadley.

The shooting happened Friday just after 5:30 p.m. outside of a home in the 100 block of W. Dutton Street near South Burdick Street.

Police had surrounded the home and were ordering the suspect out when he emerged with the fake gun and pointed it toward responding officers. The suspect was shot multiple times. It’s not clear how many officers fired at him.

Family members identified the suspect as Brad Allen Mason, 42.

A family member said that Mason had been on the phone with a friend in Florida during the incident.

“A friend of Brad’s called me and told me to get to his apartment; that he had been shot five times,” the family member said.

Mason was a registered sex offender because of a 2006 conviction for accosting a child for immoral purposes. Around 1 a.m. Wednesday, investigators say, they suspect he abducted a woman and raped her before returning her to the area where he’d picked her up.

After Mason was shot, investigators discovered that the weapon he was carrying was an airsoft gun. Police say he ignored repeated requests to drop the gun and was shot within seconds of emerging from the home.

“The friend of Brad’s was on the phone and heard the police say three times, ‘put the gun down,’ and then there was five shots fired that he could hear,” the family member said.

The officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave, which is standard protocol while the investigation into the shooting continues.

Kalamazoo DPS will hold a press conference Monday to talk about Friday’s shooting, though it is unknown what time Monday the press conference will occur.

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