DELAND, Fla. (WESH)— A man who fired shots in DeLand Sunday evening was killed by law enforcement gunfire after he fled and crashed into another vehicle. The incident began around 5:20 p.m., in the northeastern part of DeLand.
Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood and Acting DeLand Police Chief Randel Henderson briefed news crews on what happened. They said the man, who was going through a divorce, fired shots at the law office where his wife works. No one was injured at that scene, 919 Biscayne Blvd.
Witnesses called 911 to say the man was drunk, suicidal, and in possession of multiple firearms. He fled the scene in a dark Mercedes, reportedly reaching 100 mph. Volusia deputies and DeLand Police officers tried to catch the suspect, and used stop sticks to flatten some of the fleeing car’s tires.
About a mile away, the suspect crashed at high speed into a pickup. The truck was occupied by a couple who were leaving the Lowe’s store at Old Daytona Road and Amelia Ave. The couple in the pickup were able to walk away from the crash, and were taken to a hospital to be checked.
After the crash, officers repeatedly ordered the suspect to drop his gun. Instead of doing that, he appeared to be reloading his gun and made a move, leading two deputies and one DeLand officer to shoot the suspect. A witness told WESH 2 News he heard about 15 gunshots. The suspect was dead in his Mercedes.
The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating the crash. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the police use of deadly force. The names of the suspect and officers involved are not being released at this time. The officers, per policy, have temporarily been placed on paid leave.
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