Man sets house fire, kills deputy
TALLAHASSEE — A man set his house on fire and started shooting at responding police officers and firefighters Saturday, killing a deputy and wounding another before he was shot to death by law enforcement, authorities said.
The first deputy who approached the house at the end of a cul-de-sac was shot to death. The gunman picked up the deputy’s gun, walked down the street and used it to shoot a second deputy, Lt. James McQuaig of the Leon County Sheriff’s Office said.
Dozens of first responders had descended on the scene about 10:15 a.m., but no one else was hurt in the shooting.
It wasn’t known yet whether anyone was in the home when it was set on fire. Pockets of flames could be seen in the smoldering wreckage hours after the fire was set. As night fell, investigators sifted through the rubble with shovels under the bright glow of spotlights.
“It is almost unimaginable that a call for help turned into the ambush of a Leon County Sheriff’s Deputy and the shooting of another deputy by the assailant. Every one of these first responders is a hero and our hearts go out to them and their families,” Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum said in a statement.
The gunman, who was not immediately identified, was shot to death by a police officer who lived nearby. The officer heard the initial shooting, grabbed his gun and ran toward the house, according to a government official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly release the information.
The names of the slain and wounded deputies were not immediately released.