Cops Kill Man Wielding Fake Sub-machine Gun

Shooting under investigation

Thursday, Aug 6, 2009  |  Updated 4:08 PM EDT
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Cops Kill Man Wielding Fake Sub-machine Gun

Police said they shot the man when they saw him pointing what appeared to be a submachine gun.

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Police on Long Island shot and killed a man they say pointed what appeared to be a sub-machine gun at them, Thursday morning.

The tragic incident happened after Suffolk County police officers responded to a 911 call of shots fired in Bellport Village early Thursday.

The officers saw a man, later identified as Thomas Keating, 56, standing on the front steps of his home carrying "what appeared to be an automatic weapon," officials said.

Police said Keating ran into his home when officers ordered him to drop the gun, then returned and pointed it at them. Keating also had a knife on his belt, a police spokesman said.

Suffolk Police Lt. Jack Fitzpatrick said investigators later found that the gun was fake.  

Investigators said the "shots" neighbors heard were firecrackers Keating was lighting.

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