DA handling fatal shooting Lititz man reportedly attacked officer with large knife

By on December 23, 2013


PATRICK BURNS Record Express Staff pburns.eph@lnpnews.com

, Staff Writer

David P. Giliberti

Police continue to investigate the tragic events that led to the fatal shooting of a 22-year-old Lititz man who lunged at police with a knife early Saturday morning.

David P. Giliberti, 22, of 101 Arrowhead Drive, was fatally shot by a Lititz Police officer.

Lititz Police Chief William Seace released Gilberti’s name on Sunday but directed all questions about the case to the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office.

The name of the officer who shot Gilberti has not been disclosed.

The DA’s report released Saturday said Giliberti was shot multiple times shortly after a lone officer arrived at the home of Giliberti’s grandmother at about 3:20 a.m.

Giliberti, a 2009 graduate of Warwick High School who went to Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology in 2010-11, reportedly threatened the officer with a large knife.

Police said the officer opened fire only after shooting Giliberti with a Taser, which had no effect.

The officer had responded to multiple 9-1-1 calls from Giliberti’s grandmother.

The officer confronted Giliberti, "who was agitated, yelling and threatening," police said.

The officer attempted to calm the man, but Giliberti grabbed the officer and tried to remove the officer’s handgun from its holster, police said.

A physical struggle ensued and the officer shoved Giliberti away and deployed his stun gun, which had no visible affect, police said, and Giliberti then ran into the kitchen reappearing seconds later with the knife.

Giliberti advanced on the officer, yelling he was going to "kill the officer," police said.

"Despite repeated orders to stop, he continued toward the officer with the knife raised over his head," police said.

The officer then fired on Giliberti with his service weapon until the man stopped advancing. Giliberti was shot multiple times and an emergency medical services crew arrived almost immediately, police said.

It is not known conclusively at this time how many shots were fired or how many times Giliberti was struck.

Lancaster County Detectives and the Lititz Borough Police are conducting the investigation of the shooting. The officer involved in the shooting will not be identified at this time, according to Seace.

Once the investigation and autopsy are completed, the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office will make a legal determination as to whether the use of deadly force complied with Pennsylvania law.

The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is routine in officer involved shootings.

Police said it appears the only witness to the shooting was Giliberti’s grandmother, who made three 9-1-1 calls. The first call from the home came at 3:09 a.m. Saturday.

Though officials said there "was no apparent caller on the line," a Lititz Borough police officer was dispatched to the address indicated on caller ID.

The call then became disconnected, and less than a minute later a second call was received and again the 9-1-1 operator "heard no voices or other background noise, and again the call was disconnected."

The operator called the number again but no one answered. A third call was received from the same telephone number. At this time the 9-1-1 operator reported that a female requested police help at her home.

The caller’s accent made it difficult for the operator to fully understand the details of the problem, but it was determined the grandmother needed help with her grandson.

The grandmother has been interviewed by investigators, and the Lancaster County Forensic Unit has processed the area on Arrowhead Drive.

Giliberti’s uncle, James Patrick Giliberti, who lived at the same address, died in a tragic fire at the age of 20 in 1998. He was one of three 1995 Warwick High School graduates who died in a cabin fire that killed 11 on Mach 22, 1998. The two other Warwick grads killed in the Centre County cabin fire were Nicholas Berkey and Erik Gray.


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