CHICAGO (CBS) — The trial for a Park Forest police officer charged with felony reckless conduct in the death of an elderly man was scheduled to begin Tuesday.

Officer Craig Taylor shot 95-year-old John Wrana with multiple bean bag rounds inside an assisted living facility in the summer of 2013.

Police were trying to subdue Wrana — a World War II veteran — after he became belligerent and threatened nursing home staff and paramedics with a cane, butcher knife, and shoehorn.

What’s in question at Taylor’s trial is whether he was acting recklessly when he shot Wrana with beanbag rounds, or whether he reasonably feared for his safety.

Taylor has been charged with felony reckless conduct. A bench trial before Cook County Associate Judge Luciano Panici was scheduled to begin Tuesday at the Markham Courthouse.

Taylor was surrounded by about two dozen police officers as he entered the courthouse Tuesday morning, including Robbins Police Chief Mitchell Davis.

Officers from Park Forest, Matteson, and Robbins occupied one side of the courtroom as a “show of force” to show support Taylor and the department, according to Davis. He said he worked most of his career in Park Forest, and though he did not work with Taylor, he knows him personally.

“It’s important to show up for the show of force, in that there’s an outcry now for less-lethal, as far as dealing with subjects, and he used less-lethal. It was a very tragic outcome, and there’s nothing good to say about that. No one wants to see someone pass away,” Davis said. “But they tried to do the best that they could as a police department to not use deadly force, and it was a tragic outcome.”

Davis said he doesn’t understand why Taylor is facing criminal charges. He said Taylor is being punished for doing the right thing.

“We’re taking a beating in the media, and as far as society is concerned all the way around right now. So when there’s somebody who does what everybody’s asking him to do – and, once again, it was a tragic outcome – now he’s being prosecuted for it,” Davis said. “So, now, what do you want officers to do now? Now it makes it so much more difficult as police officers for us to proceed at this point.”

Wrana family attorney Nicholas Grapsas has said police kept nursing home staff away – rather than ask for their help in talking to Wrana.

“When the police came, they took over. They wouldn’t even let the staff calm him down, even though they repeatedly, literally, begged them ‘Let us try and calm him down,” Grapsas said.

He claimed officers stormed into the room with riot gear, shooting Wrana with a stun gun. They then shot him in the abdomen with a bean bag round from a shotgun.

“Police reported top hospital staff, according to records we received that they tasered John, but ‘the Taser didn’t take,’ then proceeded to shoot John three times with bean bags in the abdomen and that John ‘was about five feet away’ at the time,” Graspas said.

Taylor’s attorney, Terry Ekl, has said, despite Wrana’s age, he posed a threat.

“This man, although 95 years old, was wielding a 7-inch-blade knife, threatening to kill police, kill other people that day,” Ekl said. “There’s no question but that this was a tragedy that occurred; but there’s a big difference between a tragic incident and having committed criminal conduct, and I do not believe that Craig Taylor engaged in any criminal misconduct.”