Maryland trooper killed Peyton Ham, 16, after teen 'was carrying airsoft gun and knife after reports of armed man'

A TEENAGER was killed in a confrontation with a Maryland state trooper while holding a pellet gun and a knife, state police said.

The fallen youth, identified as 16-year-old Peyton Ham, was standing near his home on Hollywood Rd. in Leonardtown at around 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday when a uniformed state trooper approached him.

Ham was allegedly in possession of an Airsoft gun — that was described by Police Secretary Woodrow Jones III during a press conference as a “close replica of an actual gun.”

The trooper’s response came after state police dispatchers fielded multiple calls that were minutes apart describing a “guy” that was “acting suspicious,” Jones added.Both the trooper, who had been a member of the police for almost three years, and Ham were described as white, according to The Washington Post.


When the trooper arrived he encountered “an individual in the driveway” determined to be Ham standing in “a shooting stance” and allegedly pointing a gun at him.

The trooper fired his service weapon one time.

After being struck by gunfire, Ham allegedly drew a knife and tried to stand up. Also, Ham allegedly ignored the trooper’s order to drop the knife and the trooper fired a second shot.

Authorities attempted to resuscitate Ham before he was transported to St. Mary’s Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Both the Airsoft gun and a knife Ham allegedly held, were recovered at the scene, Jones confirmed.

The police spokesman admitted the emotions were heavy with the loss of life.

"I certainly empathize with the family of this young man," Jones said.What they're feeling right now I can't comprehend."

An investigation has begun and those findings will be reviewed by the county state’s attorney’s office. The trooper has been put on administrative leave.

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