State law enforcement officials in Florida are investigating the shooting of a 60-year-old man inside his front yard by deputies with the sheriff’s office in Escambia County.
“It was like a firing squad,” the victim, Roy Middleton, told the Pensacola News Journal on Saturday. “Bullets were flying everywhere.”
WALA-TV reported that Middleton was shot in the leg, while his mother’s car was hit by at least five bullets.
Middleton told the News Journal that two deputies shot him early Saturday morning when he turned to face them while getting a cigarette out of his mother’s car, saying he was bent over inside the car when he was ordered to “get your hands out where [the shooter] could see them.”
The News Journal reported that a neighbor called authorities after seeing someone reaching into the car, prompting the unidentified deputies to respond to what they thought was a burglary in progress. The two deputies have been put on paid leave.
“I thought it was firecrackers, my girlfriend didn’t,” a neighbor told WEAR-TV. “Then we jumped up to look out the window and saw deputies carrying shotguns and stuff.”
Middleton told the News Journal the deputies did not check the license plate on the car or provide an explanation for their actions, but was glad they did not hit him in the head and chest.
“My mother’s car is full of bullet holes though,” he said to the News-Journal. “My wife had to go and get a rental.”
[Image: “Policeman With Weapon Drawn” via Shutterstock]