Parents: Man shot by off-duty trooper was asking for help, suffered from depression

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BUTLER TOWNSHIP, Pa. —

The parents of a man shot and killed by an off-duty state trooper Friday night said their son was likely going to their neighbor’s house for help. 

Bob Barkus said his son Kristopher, 25, was crying out for help when he went the trooper’s home on September Drive in Butler County.

“You’ve lost the biggest treasure you’ve been blessed with,” Bob Barkus said. “I believe he went to the neighbor’s house. He met him before [and] knew he was a policeman and he could help him.”

Bob Barkus said his son was an accomplished musician who suffered from depression and recent health problems. The man’s father said about a month ago, Kristopher Barkus approached the trooper and asked if he could arrest him and put him in jail.

“We, and especially my wife, have been dealing with this for so many years…, his health problems, trying to get him squared away,” Bob Barkus said.

Bob Barkus said his son took off from their home Friday night and threatened to harm himself.  Bob Barkus said his other son followed Kristopher and witnessed the shooting.

“I regret I didn’t follow him with my son,” said Bob Barkus.

Investigators said the trooper told the men to leave. Neighbors told investigators that they heard a man yelling "drop your gun, drop your gun" and then shots were fired.

“[Kristopher] Barkus brandished a firearm, and the trooper stopped his action by discharging his firearm,” said Pennsylvania State Trooper Dan Kester.

Bob Barkus said his son only owned an airsoft gun.

An investigation into the shooting is ongoing.