ORLANDO, Fla. - The father of a man shot by Orlando police said officers should never have opened fire on his son.
"When officers arrived, the subject confronted our officers. He was armed with a baseball bat. Officers attempted to talk to him and calm him down. However, it seemed like the longer the officers talked, the more aggressive the person became," said Sgt. Jim Young of the Orlando Police Department.
WFTV learned two officers opened fire and the man, who police said has a long history of violence and mental illness, was shot multiple times. He is hospitalized in critical condition.
"In fact, the subject became increasingly aggressive. He continued to attack at the officers with the baseball bat coming at them. The officers began to back up, however, they were placed in a deadly force situation, being threatened with a baseball bat and two officers discharged their service weapons," said Young.
Gebreyohannes' father, Meb Yohan, told Channel 9's Mario Boone that he warned police his son has a history of mental illness.
Yohan said his son is schizophrenic and was having a psychotic episode, which prompted Yohan to call 911.
"Were you afraid of him and that is why you called police?" Boone asked Yohan.
"No. I wanted to get medical treatment," said Yohan.
Yohan said officer shot his son several times.
"Nine times. His kidneys, his liver, his lung, his stomach, his pelvis are all shattered," said Yohan.
Yohan said he doesn't believe it was necessary for officer to shoot his son.
"He was no threat to anybody. He didn't hit anybody. He didn't beat anybody," said Yohan.
Boone learned that Gebreyohannes has been arrested several times. Most of his arrests were for theft-related crimes.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting.