TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Hillsborough County deputies killed an armed man after a standoff at a Tampa apartment complex Sunday morning.
Chief Deputy Donna Lusczynski told reporters in a press conference that the deadly encounter began after deputies investigated a shooting at the Bristol Bay Apartments on Bristol Bay Way.
Body cam video showed a deputy approached a man, identified as Jonathan Huertas Reyes, and ask him what was going on. Huertas Reyes said “No English” before running away.
“Sheriff’s office, stop! Get on the ground,” the deputy shouted.
The deputy chases Huertas Reyes and made a noise with his stun device in an attempt to make him stop. The man stopped but pulled out a gun and pointed it at his head while walking away, according to Lusczynski.
“The deputy continues to tell him, ‘put the gun down! put the gun down!'” she said. “Other deputies begin to arrive on scene and, again, talking to the individual, telling him ‘Put the gun down. Stop. Talk to us.'”
Residents at the apartment complex also approached the scene and told Huertas Reyes to put the gun down in Spanish, although deputies shouted for them to get back inside. A Spanish-speaking deputy also talked to the man on the phone.
Lusczynski said Huertas Reyes got into a fight with someone at a party over a woman earlier that night. The fight went out into the parking lot where Huertas Reyes shot at the other man but missed, according to the sheriff’s office.
The chief deputy said during the standoff with law enforcement, Huertas Reyes said he might as well kill himself because he was going to jail for shooting at the other man.
“The individual puts the gun down on the ground but then picks it up again and points it in the direction of our deputies,” Lusczynski said. “At which time, they fire their weapons. The subject is struck, falls to the ground.”
Deputies performed first aid on the man after the shooting. He was taken to Tampa General Hospital where he later died.
The sheriff’s office said Huertas Reyes had previous arrests for domestic battery and domestic battery by strangulation.
The three deputies — identified Sergeant Benjamin Kenney, Deputy Nicholas Scudder, and Deputy Jeff Louis — involved in the incident are on administrative leave while the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigates the shooting. None of the deputies previously used deadly force in their careers, according to Lusczynski.