Police Officers in Toms River were able to diffuse a stressful situation and prevent a suicide by cop shooting along James Street and Lewis Avenue early Sunday morning.

Several calls had come in of a man pointing a gun at the caller, prompting police to the area around 2:10 am where they found Zachary Brown, 26 of Toms River, fitting the caller’s description, and walking west on James Street.

Brown had his left hand in his jacket pocket and police said he appeared to be "manipulating an unknown object."

He was given commands to remove his hand from his pocket, but he refused to comply with police.

Brown also began boasting that he had a weapon in his possession and had grim intentions and said he was either “going to assault officers or officers were going to have to assault him”.

Police said he kept making movements in the direction of the officers "as if he was going to pull his hand out of his pocket and reveal a firearm."

Officers continually tried to reason with Brown who continued to make troubling statements such as "What's wrong with you? Don't you want to go home tonight?'"

Brown became impatient with the situation he created and tried to force action by he advancing toward the police officers.

He was ordered multiple times to stop moving but refused officer's commands and continued walking toward them.

Officer John Marsicano then acted by deploying a single cartridge from his taser and Brown collapsed to the ground.

Brown was placed in handcuffs by police and was then treated by EMS on scene who brought him to Community Medical Center for further treatment.

The Toms River Communications office said that the multiple calls received to dispatch were made by Zachary Brown himself.

He is charged with Terroristic Threats, Obstruction of Justice, False Reports, and Resisting Arrest.

No weapon was recovered.

“There were eleven Toms River Police Officers, and a K9 Officer, on the scene during Zachary Brown’s attempted Suicide by Cop. I would like to commend every one of them for their professionalism and conduct during a very intense situation. There were several different ways the night could have potentially ended, and we are grateful that everyone went home safe to their family at the end of their shift," Police Chief Mitch Little said.


You can follow Vin Ebenau on Twitter and Instagram and email news tips to vin.ebenau@townsquaremedia.com.

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