TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Deputies shot and killed a man during a standoff in unincorporated Clearwater on Tuesday, police said.
The incident occurred in the 2100 block of Indigo Drive in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Clearwater Police Chief Dan Slaughter said the man, 32-year-old Josue Arias showed up to his ex-girlfriend’s home armed with a handgun. His ex and another man went to separate rooms to hide, then the woman called 911.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office responded and the woman was able to escape. Slaughter said she left her phone inside the residence, but did not hang up on the 911 call, allowing deputies to listen in on Arias and better track his whereabouts while they tried to diffuse the situation.
Slaughter said Arias came to the front door with the other man and had a gun pointed to his head. He eventually released the man and let him run to safety.
Slaughter said deputies shot Arias after he walked into the yard and appeared to be scoping out the area to see where they were located.
“The deputies neutralized the target and fired, and hit Mr. Arias an unknown amount of times at this point,” Slaughter said.
Slaughter said Arias may have fired his gun once or twice during the incident, but did not appear to shoot at deputies in the moment before he was killed.
“The deputies fired in response to his reckless nature of coming out and looking for, basically, a firefight,” Slaughter explained.
Arias died at the scene. No other injuries were reported.
Slaughter said Arias had made comments about going back to prison during the standoff. According to Slaughter, his rap sheet included five arrests for armed burglary in Pasco, Hillsborough in Pinellas counties. Investigators suspect he may have stolen the handgun from his ex-girlfriend, Slaughter said.