ALCORN COUNTY, Miss. — A Corinth, Mississippi man was killed following an incident with Alcorn County Sheriff’s Deputies Wednesday.
According to the Alcorn County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were called to a disturbance at a home on County Road 742 near Walnut, Miss., around 5 a.m.
The first deputy on the scene came into contact with 39-year-old Robert Alan Blackburn of Corinth. Deputies said he was armed with a knife.
After several attempts to get Blackburn to drop the knife, the deputy reportedly deployed his Taser, which was ineffective.
The deputy then used pepper spray to attempt to control Blackburn, who ran into the woods.
According to the report, Blackburn came out of the woods at the home about 30 minutes later.
Deputies again tried to get him to drop the knife.
A second deputy deployed his Taser, which again was ineffective, the report said.
Blackburn then raised the knife and lunged at the deputies.
At that time, an Alcorn County Deputy reportedly fired one round with his service weapon hitting Blackburn.
Deputies administered first aid until an ambulance arrived.
Blackburn was taken to Magnolia Hospital, where he later died.
FOX13 spoke to a woman claiming to be Blackburn’s sister who said her brother was having a psychotic breakdown. It has since been asserted that she is a close friend and not a blood relative.
Stephanie Machado praised the Alcorn County Sheriff’s Department for repeatedly trying to subdue Blackburn with tasers and pepper spray.
She said they also tried to talk him into putting down a knife. But the sheriff’s department said deputies had to shoot Blackburn when non-lethal force did not work and he lunged at a deputy with a knife.
Machado even spoke highly of the deputy who fired the deadly shot.
“After he deployed his weapon and Alan was on the ground he got down and asked him if he was saved if he knew his Lord and Savior. He needed to know that he was saved and he prayed with him,” Machado said.
Machado said the sheriff’s department was working to get her brother committed to a mental institution at the time of the shooting Wednesday in the Theo community of Alcorn County.
She said he had told friends he wanted to die by suicide by a cop.
“He had told them that, that would be the way that he would die is suicide by cop, and I believe that his mental issues had gotten to him to the point that he took matters into his own hands,” Machado said.
Machado said she holds the Alcorn County Sheriff’s Department in high esteem and wants people to know her brother wasn’t a bad guy.
“He would go above and he would give you the shirt off his back. He just had mental issues like a lot of people. It just went from bad to worse,” she said.
Both law enforcement and Blackburn’s family said they believe the tasers were ineffective because Blackburn had on a heavy jacket.
The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation was contacted, and the investigation was turned over to them.
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