A newly released video shows shocking footage of a New Orleans man charging at TSA officials with a machete.
The video, taken March 20, 2015, shows a man later identified as Richard White running through a New Orleans Airport Terminal waving the large knife while spraying wasp spray at various people, according to the New Orleans Advocate, which obtained the footage earlier this week.
Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Lt. Heather Sylve ultimately shot him in the thigh and he died of his injuries after refusing medical treatment, reportedly because it went against his beliefs as a Jehovah’s Witness.
In the video, White, 63, can be seen attempting to go through the pre-clearance lane, when an agent asks him to stop. White then sprays two agents with a can of wasp spray.
Officials said White was carrying six homemade explosives during his machete rampage.
A subsequent investigation found no motive for the attack, but White’s sister, Barbara Suggs, told the paper White had been battling depression and mental illness.
“He suffered,” she said. “I feel like something could have been done before his killing.”
Donna Jackson, who lived across the street from White’s last known address, said her neighbor’s actions at the airport weren’t in keeping with the man she knew.
“He was kind. He would help you,” Jackson told the Advocate back in March 2015.“My prayers go out to his wife and his family. They have my deepest condolences.”
The Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office refused to prosecute anyone involved in the case.
Officials have since said that the shooting of White was justified.
One in four police killings in 2015 involved a person with mental illness, according to a Washington Post investigation. Experts note that law enforcement officials don’t receive adequate training in how to handle people experiencing mental health crises, and that what many see as standard policing tactics ― like yelling or pointing a gun at someone ― can be disastrous when confronting a mentally ill individual.