Man dies after officer involved shooting in Pittsfield

PITTSFIELD, Mass. (NEWS10) – A Pittsfield man has died after officials said he confronted officers with a knife.

Just before 1 p.m Friday, police were called to 43 Taylor St. in Pittsfield for a domestic incident.

Witnesses told officials Daniel Gillis, 36, was distraught and intoxicated after having been fired from his job earlier in the day. When police arrived at the home, Gillis reportedly confronted officers at the front door, refused to let them in, and armed himself with a knife.

His girlfriend took the knife and brought it outside to throw it away.

When police asked to enter the home, Gillis barricaded himself inside and armed himself with a second knife.

“I was scared,” neighbor Phyllis Besanceney said. “That’s never happened here before.”

According to officials, Gillis then went out the back of the home and confronted officers in the side yard. Despite repeated calls to stop and drop the knife, Gillis ran at officers, according to the Berkshire Co. District Attorney’s Office.

He was shot by Officer Christopher Colello and later pronounced dead at Berkshire Medical Center.

“It’s scary because you never know what’s going to happen anymore,” Besanceney said.

Besanceney lives across the street. She wasn’t home when the incident took place but her grandson was. He texted her right after it happened.

She wishes it could have been prevented.

“I don’t think they had to shoot him like that,” she said. “They could have just shot him in the leg or something so that he would fall.”

Besanceney said she lives on a usually quiet street.

The investigation into the shooting is being investigated by Massachusetts State Police.


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