The shooting played havoc with students trying to get to and from their apartments and the campus. Police blocked off the streets around South Eighth and East San Salvador streets where it all happened.
Student Cindy Martinez was trying to get back to her place, which was inside the perimeter.
"I've been gone since 11 a.m. and I haven't been able to get in," she said. "But I had a class so that killed time."
The first call to police dispatchers came in at 11 a.m. about a man with a knife on campus. University police went looking for him and say they found a person wielding a large knife.
SJPD Public Information Officer Albert Morales says two campus police officers tried to get the suspect to give up the knife but he refused. According to Morales, the man charged officers with the knife, prompting one campus officer to use his Taser stun gun on him. When the man continued at the officers, Morales says the second officer fired his service weapon and hit the suspect.
"The suspect charged at the officers with the knife," he said. "One officer from the university police department actually discharged his Taser, but obviously that had no effect. What happened after that is the second officer on scene used his firearm, obviously in defense of his life and his partner's life."
Teenager Abigail Smith was with a friend at an apartment when she heard two shots.
"We were just talking about, like, school and stuff and like we heard like, bang bang," she said. "And I was like, 'what was that?' She's like, 'nevermind it was just somebody upstairs.'"
Neighbor Susan Guillory says her friend witnessed the shooting.
"He got up and proceeded to leave and the police officer gave no command for him to stop or anything," Guillory said. "And then they shot him twice."
The suspect was transported to a local hospital and died shortly after.
Officer Morales says they are trying to find out who he is and if he was a student.