Thirty-year-old Glendale Police Officer Josh Hilling is being called “one brave man,” after an intense stand-off with a knife-wielding assailant in a video taken by body-camera was recently released.
On March 29, a man suspected of fatally stabbing someone 3 weeks prior in Maryland was spotted on the southbound side of I-75 in Glendale, Ohio.
The footage shows Hilling approach the man—identified later as 46-year-old Javier Pablo Aleman—and asked him to remove his bag and step over to Hilling’s police cruiser.
Just as he is about to be patted down, things took a dangerous turn.
The video shows Aleman pull a knife from behind his back and begin to wave it, stepping toward Hilling, while shouting “Kill me! Kill me! Kill me now!”
As Aleman moves just within arms reach, Hilling fires one shot, hitting him in the abdomen, and he falls to the ground.
Hilling immediately radios for backup, keeping his gun drawn and pointed at the suspect—but Aleman is persistent.
For the next 3 and a half minutes, the video remains in an intense standoff—a standoff that closed I-75 for several hours that afternoon.
Aleman, still wielding the knife, proceeds to follow and act hostile toward Hilling, hoping to provoke a shooting, but the officer (although shouting and sometimes swearing) remains collected and does his best to relax the suspect.
Repeatedly, Hilling shouts lines such as:
“Sir, drop the knife. Please drop the knife.”
“Stop, just stop.”
“Just get down we don’t want to.”
“Let us help you.”
Aleman stumbles multiple times, but continues to get back up, eventually removing his jacket and hat—and even moves toward other responding police cruisers and oncoming traffic.
It isn’t until roughly 5 and a half minutes into the video that Aleman is finally contained and put into cuffs.
Hilling’s display of exceptional policeman skills earned him the “one brave man” title by Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters, who’d later release the body-camera footage to the public.
“I’m not going to speak for the chief or the sheriff, but Joshua Hilling deserves a medal for what he did,” Deters said.
Local news sources said officers quickly learned that Aleman was wanted in connection with the March 17 stabbing death of 51-year-old Victor Adolfo Serrano.
Police said Serrano, who was pronounced dead at the scene, suffered several stab wounds in Dundalk, Maryland. Deters said there is a good chance the knife Aleman was waving at Officer Hilling was the same weapon used in Baltimore, according to local reports.
Sources say he is detained in Cincinnati on charges of attempted murder and will face a grand jury by April 13. There is a potential prison sentence of 11 years.
Prosecutors filed no charges against the commended Officer Hilling, who sources report had only been a full-time officer for 12 weeks when he shot Aleman.
Local media said that in regards to his honorable policeman display, he was rated 4.5 out of 5 by Glendale Police Chief Dave Warman, who also said:
“P.O. Hilling is aggressive in his enforcement duties but also exercises significant discretion in his decision making. He is dependable and available for extra duties when needed. Josh is well-liked by his peers and has unlimited growth potential with the department.”