Tampa police officers shot and killed a 33-year-old man after he shot them with a machine gun in the Seminole Heights area.
TAMPA, Florida. Several Tampa police officers shot and killed a 33-year-old man Monday night in the Seminole Heights area.
Investigators said the suspect stabbed the mother of his children in front of them before leading police in a dangerous chase that ended in a shootout.
It happened on North Florida Avenue near Euclid Avenue. Innocent bystanders were trapped between the shootout.
The suspect crashed into one car with two people inside, and that’s when the woman driving the other car was caught in the middle of a shootout.
Sabrina Turner was driving to work on North Florida Avenue near Euclid Avenue when suddenly the car ahead of her screeched to a halt.
Turner said she heard gunshots. She believes that about 50 shots could have been fired.
“I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I’m dying.’ They shoot and shoot and all the time I think, “Oh my God, I’m going to die,” Turner recalls.
The Tampa Police Department said the suspect fired a stolen assault rifle at officers while they returned fire. At this time, Turner was in her car and crouched as low as she could. She thought she would be shot and die.
“There were so many shots around the car. I just thought I was going to die, and I have children, I have six children at home,” Turned said.
Tampa Police Chief Lee Bercow said during a press conference that earlier in the day, the suspect stabbed the mother of his children several times in front of them. The suspect took the children and left the woman to bleed to death, investigators said. She was taken to the hospital in critical condition.
“We are thinking of the stabbed victim who is now fighting for her life and the children who have witnessed this,” Chief Lee Bercow said.
Berko said the suspect took the children to his brother’s house, where he left them and stole his brother’s assault rifle. The suspect led the police on the chase, crashing into the car, where Turner was caught in the middle.
“I couldn’t count the number of shots, but it was non-stop. It sounded like fireworks were constantly exploding,” Turner recalled.
Tampa police officers were able to pull her out of the car in the middle of the gunfight and escape her neighborhood safely. Turner was unharmed, as were other bystanders. None of the officers were hurt either.
Police have not released the suspect’s name as they are still notifying the family of his death.
As for the officers involved in the shootout, they are on administrative leave while the FDLE investigates.