Man shot by Lake Co. deputy had airsoft gun - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Man shot by Lake Co. deputy had airsoft gun

Lake County Sheriff says Thomas Hirko pointed a gun at a deputy before he was killed. (Source: Lake County Sheriff Dept.) Lake County Sheriff says Thomas Hirko pointed a gun at a deputy before he was killed. (Source: Lake County Sheriff Dept.)
Police were called to home for a stabbing. (Source: WOIO) Police were called to home for a stabbing. (Source: WOIO)
PERRY TOWNSHIP, OH (WOIO) -

A Lake County Sheriff's deputy shot and killed a man accused of stabbing his wife at their home in Perry Township.

Investigators said at a news conference on Friday that Thomas Hirko, 54, stabbed his wife Lorrie Osborne-Hirko at least two times. Her injuries were considered severe.

When deputies arrived at 2925 River Road Thursday just after 10 p.m., Thomas was in the front yard, armed with a gun that turned out to be an airsoft gun, investigators said with the orange tip removed.

Deputies said Hirko raised the gun several times, they shot him when he said, "It's time to die."

One deputy fired four times, hitting Hirko twice. He was taken to Madison Hospital and pronounced dead. No deputies were hurt.

"Something tripped in his mind that said you could call it a psychological break," said Sheriff Dan Dunlap.

Mark Kellerman lives next door to the Hirkos

"Complete shock, I mean nice guy I don't know what to tell you there.  I've known them since they've been there," said Mark Kellerman, neighbor. 

Court records show a long history of financial problems, from tax liens to foreclosures. That is just the beginning, records also show 3 DUI's,
a prior domestic violence charge with a previous wife, disorderly conduct and a 2006 standoff with Willoughby police. 

"Mr. Hirko barricaded himself in a house and said if any police attempts to enter the building he would commit suicide, he would kill himself," said Sheriff Dunlap.

On the Thursday night's 911 call a woman is heard on the 911 saying, "he's got a gun, he's gonna force them to shoot him." 

Less than 40 seconds later gunshots in the background. She then said "Oh my God they shot him."Lorrie Hirko's wounds are serious, not life threatening.

Lorrie Osborne-Hirko, 55,, was transported to Tri-Point hospital.  She then flown by Life Flight to MetroHealth Medical Center. She suffered wounds to her back and chest.

The Lake County Detective Bureau and Lake County Crime Lab are conducting the initial investigation. 

The deputies involved in the shooting have been removed from shift duties as protocol. 

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