A 26-year-old Hazleton man was shot to death by city police following an incident early Saturday morning.
State police at Hazleton identified the victim as Jonathan Kane Garay, of 521 Alter St. He was shot by police near his home, troopers said.
According to troopers, who took over the investigation of the shooting at the request of Hazleton police, Hazleton officers responded at 2:30 a.m. to a report of a large fight in the vicinity of Second and Alter streets. Officers were approached by a bystander who informed them that a male had fled the scene towards First Street in possession of a handgun. Officers then responded to the area of First and Alter streets.
While in the area an officer observed a male run through a gate to the rear of 521 Alter St. The officer made verbal contact with the male, who was later identified as Garay. During this contact, troopers said, the officer also observed a silver and black handgun in Garay's waistband.
The officer physically grabbed Garay and, during a struggle, the gun fell to the floor of the rear porch at 521 Alter St. A second officer then arrived to assist at the scene.
Troopers said at this point Garay dove for the weapon between the two officers. Garay grabbed the gun from the floor and attempted to raise the weapon towards the officers. An officer fired his duty weapon at Garay.
Garay was taken to the Hazleton General Hospital where he died from gunshot wounds.
The state police Troop N Major Case Team was activated and has taken over the investigation. Assisting troopers are members of the Luzerne County District Attorney's office and coroner's office.
The coroner's office reported that Garay died of multiple gunshot wounds.
The names of the Hazleton officers involved in the shooting has not been released by state police.