Schenectady County

Man shot at Gazette faces felonies (with video)

The man shot by police Saturday at the offices of The Daily Gazette in an apparent attempt at suicid

The man shot by police Saturday at the offices of The Daily Gazette in an apparent attempt at suicide by cop has now been charged with three separate felonies.

Elvis Norwood, 21, of Hattie Street, faces one count each of second-degree burglary, attempted aggravated assault on a police officer and menacing a police officer, all felonies.

Norwood was also charged with misdemeanor weapons possession.

Norwood was shot Saturday afternoon after convincing a security guard to let him inside the paper’s locked offices for a drink of water. He then refused to leave.

Police arrived after the paper’s general manager, called to the building by the security guard, spotted a knife in Norwood’s hand. After about five minutes of negotiation with police, Norwood lunged at an officer with the knife.

Four-year veteran Brett Ferris then fired four shots, hitting Norwood three times in the arm, chest and stomach.

Norwood survived and continued to be listed in stable condition at Albany Medical Center, police said. He was to be arraigned at the hospital.

Police spokesman Lt. Mark McCracken said it was fortunate the officers weren’t injured by Norwood. Nonetheless, he said, he’s still facing class C felonies.

“Those are serious charges,” McCracken said.

The burglary charge was increased because Norwood possessed a knife, McCracken said. The case also became a burglary once the security guard asked him to leave. At that point, he was illegally in the building.

The charges mean Norwood will remain under guard at the hospital until he makes any bail set at his arraignment. If he can’t make bail, he will be taken directly to the jail upon his release from the hospital.

Meanwhile Monday, Norwood’s aunt Nicola Norwood described the days leading up to the shooting and the last time she heard from her nephew.

She also revealed a family history of depression.

The last time Nicola Norwood saw her nephew Elvis Norwood was early Saturday morning, she said. He seemed labored and a little confused. Shortly after, she heard his boots as he walked downstairs to leave.

It was unusual, she said, but not alarming. She went back to sleep.

The next thing she heard of her nephew was late Saturday afternoon when Schenectady police detectives knocked on her door.

“I was scared,” she said of hearing the news. “I’m just glad that he’s OK.”

Norwood had been suicidal in recent days, police said after the shooting. Police picked him up within 10 days prior to the shooting on an order from the hospital.

In an apparent second incident, Norwood’s aunt said her nephew called Ellis, telling them he was going to commit suicide. That also resulted in Norwood going to Ellis.

Nicola Norwood said her nephew responded vaguely when she asked him what happened at the hospital.

“They let him go again,” Nicola Norwood said. “They should have probably kept him there.”

A spokeswoman for the hospital said she could not comment on specific cases.

Asked about the hospital’s general policy regarding suicidal individuals, the spokeswoman wrote: “When a person arrives at the hospital for psychiatric evaluation, that assessment is performed by a dedicated and experienced Crisis Team. Based on the results of the evaluation, a clinical determination is made on how to best manage that patient in full compliance with New York State Mental Hygiene law.”

Nicola Norwood did not have an answer for what might have prompted her nephew’s suicidal thoughts.

Elvis often hung out with his siblings, his aunt said. He had a girlfriend of at least a couple months, but he was also looking for a job, she said.

Elvis Norwood lived with his aunt and his mother on Hattie Street. He had lived there for about six or seven years.

The apartment is just over a mile by car from The Daily Gazette’s offices on Maxon Road Extension.

The paper continued to review its security Monday, Managing Editor Judy Patrick said.

The Daily Gazette contracts for security with the company GS4, which employed the security guard, identified as Fred Behrmann.

Patrick was unsure of Behrmann’s status with GS4, but she said Behrmann won’t be returning to work at the paper.

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