Police release names of officers involved in fatal Plant City shooting

PLANT CITY, Fla. (WFLA) – The Plant City Police Department has released the names of two officers involved in a fatal shooting Thursday morning.

According to police, Jesus Cervantes, 35, of Plant City was shot and killed by Officer Gerald Baker, a 12-year veteran of the force and Officer Derek Hartmann, who has spent four years with the agency.

Both officers are on administrative leave pending an investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office.

The officers had responded to a 911 call from a man who told dispatchers he was being followed for two hours and needed assistance.

When the officers came to the scene, they spotted a car speeding down the road. Police say the driver, who was later identified as Cervantes, at one point tried to run an officer off the road. After a chase, police deflated Cervantes’ car’s tires. He lost control of the vehicle and crashed near a BP gas station located at 1908 E. Alsobrook Street.

When police surrounded the vehicle and asked Cervantes to get out and show his hands, he did not cooperate, and instead tried to get into the rear door on the driver’s side to grab an unknown object.

That’s when Officer Baker and Officer Hartmann opened fire, killing Cervantes at the scene.

No further details regarding the incident have been released at this time.




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