"My brother has been Baker Acted three times because he was threatening to hurt himself so I figured that would happen with Justin," said Lyons. Florida's Baker Act allows the involuntary institutionalization of an individual, and it can be initiated by law enforcement officials.
"The only person Justin threatened was himself and I honestly don’t think he wanted to die."
...two St. Johns County Sheriff's deputies, 26-year-old Jonas Carballosa and 32-year-old Kyle Braig, arrived at the home, armed with assault rifles, and told Kaitlyn to wait outside.
"I thought they were going into war," she remembered thinking when she first saw the large guns. Within moments, Justin was shot dead.
Denise Way, Justin's mom, said the detective relayed to her that "they told Justin to drop the knife and he didn't - so they shot him because 'That's what we do.'"
"The only person Justin threatened was himself and I honestly don't think he wanted to die."
In a phone interview with Commander Chuck Mulligan of the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, The Daily Beast asked if it was standard procedure to bring assault rifles, but not mental health professionals, to a scene where someone is suicidal.
"If the deputies feel that that is the appropriate weapon system to use, then yes," said Mulligan.
Mulligan added that the difference between an assault rifle and a handgun would not have affected the outcome in Justin Way's case.
"Whether it's a rifle or not, in many senses, is a non-issue," he said. "A bullet comes out of a handgun, a bullet comes out of a rifle."
On Facebook, Jonas Carballosa, the second deputy involved in the Justin Way shooting, once posted the following quote: "Most people respect the badge. Everyone respects the gun."
Way's parents said they do not ever want to call the police again - for anything.
Kaitlyn Lyons said she hopes the police rethink how guns are used in cases where people are calling about those who are suicidal or seeking help.
"I think they should come in using other things," she said. "And I think they definitely need to figure out how to handle suicidal people."