|Chief Shane Denham|
Anniston police officers fatally shot a man who refused to drop his weapon, which later turned out to be an airsoft gun, on Tuesday morning. A caller who identified himself as "Frank" called 911 around 9:30 a.m. to report a male walking round the area of Net Street and Twine Street with a firearm. Two officers responded to the area in the Blue Mountain community and saw a white male holding a weapon. Police Captain Allen George says the officers gave "multiple commands" for the man to drop his weapon, but he refused. Police chief Shane Denham confirmed the man's identity as 53 year old Frank Charles Johnston. Denham said that not only did he refuse to drop the weapon but he raised the weapon and took up a shooting stance, and pointed it at the officers. Both of the officers fired shots on Johnston. Police haven't said how many shots were fired, but a neighbor said he heard five shots. The Calhoun County Coroner's Office pronounced Johnston dead on the scene. Investigators later discovered that the man's weapon was an airsoft-type gun designed to look like an Airsoft 1911 pistol. Denham said You couldn't tell that it was not a real weapon. So for the officers, the Chief said it was a real weapon. They were in fear for their lives and they responded appropriately.