Police officers shot an armed man inside a mental health facility after he stabbed several people and refused to drop his gun while his victims were bleeding badly, authorities said.
Seven people were taken to hospitals, including the man, Allegheny County spokeswoman Amie Downs said. It was unclear if any injuries were life-threatening after the Friday afternoon attack at Turtle Creek Valley Mental Health/Mental Retardation in Homestead, just southeast of Pittsburgh.
Police implored 38-year-old Dustin Johnson to drop his gun or be shot based on texts from inside that the victims were bleeding profusely and needed help, Downs said. Johnson dropped his knife but not the gun before he was shot, she said.
Johnson apparently gained entry to the secure facility before attacking people on the fifth floor, authorities said.
Cherrill Fulton, who works at the facility as a resident advisor, told NBC affiliate WPXI that Johnson acted "strangely" before pulling out what she thought was a gun. Johnson told her that he wasn't going to hurt her.
Fulton told the station that she hid under a desk and couldn't see what was happening, but she heard people screaming and Johnson say, "You ruined my life."
"It was terrifying,” Fulton said. “I didn't know what was going to happen."
Officials said Johnson was armed with two large kitchen knives and a BB gun, WPXI reported.
The center says it provides care and support for people and communities dealing with behavioral, mental health, substance abuse and developmental issues. Its executive director, Fran Sheedy Bost, described Friday's incident as a "hostage situation."