Salinas Man Arrested on Two Suicide-By-Cop Attempts

Salinas Man Arrested on Two Suicide-By-Cop Attempts

SALINAS — 31-year-old Salinas man Roberto Torres Acosta is alive after two suicide-by-cop attempts over the weekend thanks to two Salinas police officers.

On Saturday morning at about 10:13 AM, an officer conducting an investigation in the 600 block of Abbott Street was approached by Acosta, who had his hands in his jacket and asked the officer to draw his gun. Fearing that Acosta may be armed, the officer did so and Acosta drew his hands from his pockets, producing a small object which he aimed directly at the officer. Fortunately, it turned out to be a cell phone. No shots were fired and Acosta bolted.

Once on the roadway, Acosta kept his hands in his pockets and repeatedly called for officers to shoot him. A supervisor who’d responded to the call holstered his gun and instead drew his taser, at which point Acosta deferred and was taken into custody. He told officers that he’d taken drugs and wanted to die, which was confirmed by a friend at the scene who’d received a troubling phone call from Acosta earlier that day.

Acosta was then taken to the hospital for treatment, where it was discovered he was not under the influence of drugs, but rather suffering from mental illness.

After a short stint in the hospital, Acosta was released.

Then, on Sunday at about 7 PM, he approached another Salinas officer outside the Eastside Police Substation with his hands behind his back, moving as though he was manipulating something while crouched in an aggressive stance. He then became physically aggressive and told the officer to shoot him, drawing his hands from his pocket in a shooting gesture. Again, it was a cell phone. No shots were fired, and Acosta was again taken into custody.

Acosta allegedly told police and jail staff that he intends to continue until an officer finally kills him.

The matter has been turned over to the Monterey County Behavioral Health Unit in hopes of developing a long-term solution.

Salinas Man Arrested on Two Suicide-By-Cop Attempts was last modified: October 13th, 2016 by admin
Categories: Monterey

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Daniel Miranda

Dan Miranda is a Journalist, Photographer and Sports Writer for the San Jose, Santa Cruz, and Monterey area. He can be reached at