Video: Brevard Sheriff shares footage of ambush shooting that left gunman dead and deputy shot

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BREVARD COUNTY, FL – The Brevard County Sheriff’s Office recently released the dashcam footage of a traffic stop that turned into an ambush shooting from late August which resulted in the armed suspect being killed and one of the deputies being shot and suffering severe head injuries during the incident.

Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey noted in the released footage that the deceased suspect was a “career criminal” and was critical over the suspect being out on bond during the time of the ambush.

The incident occurred on August 30th, after Deputy Tyler Thoman pulled over a vehicle on West New Haven Avenue, west of Interstate 95 in West Melbourne. The vehicle hosted two male occupants, one female occupant, an infant and a dog.

Footage from the incident was captured from the dashcam of Deputy Brian Potters, who was the second deputy to arrive on the scene to assist Deputy Thoman with the stop due to the multiple occupants inside of the vehicle.

In the footage captured, Deputy Thoman can be seen speaking with the female occupant of the vehicle right next to his cruiser. While this is ongoing, Deputy Potters can be seen briefly standing beside another one of the occupants leaning against the trunk of the car.

Deputy Potters then makes his way over to the suspect in the back passenger seat of the vehicle, engaging in small talk over the infant and dog in the car. Overall, the exchange between Deputy Potters and the suspect seemed pleasant and conversational.

But it was when Deputy Potters asked the suspect in the back seat to step out of the car that things went chaotic – and fast.

The suspect produced what Sheriff Ivey referred to as a “small stock AR-15 styled rifle”, which the suspect immediately opens fire on Deputy Potters.

Deputy Potter can be heard yelling that he was “hit” by the suspect’s gunfire, as he works to create distance between himself and the suspect.

While this is taking place, both of the other vehicle occupants scurry to avoid being caught in between the gunfire, and Deputy Thoman rushes to the rear of his vehicle to take cover.

As the gunman continues to fire from in front of the vehicle, it appears that he’s hit by some return fire by one of the deputies – which results in him somewhat hobbling to move around while gunfire is exchanged.

The suspect goes between the two vehicles seen in the footage, and the two deputies slip back into frame and peer over Deputy Thoman’s vehicle in what appears to be them scanning for the suspect’s whereabouts.

Suddenly, the suspect comes up behind both of the deputies, using his rifle to bludgeon Deputy Potters on the head, as the weapon apparently jammed during the firefight.

Deputy Thoman backs and drops the empty magazine from his sidearm, coming back around on the other side after reloading and empties the entire magazine into the suspect.

Deputy Thoman was not injured during the incident; however, Deputy Potters suffered a gunshot wound to the leg and both lacerations and fractures to his face from the assault he endured via the suspect using his firearm as an impromptu cudgel.

Sheriff Ivey wanted to point out during the dashcam footage release that neither of the other two occupants that were interviewed by the deputies prior to the ambush had anything to do with the attempted killing of the deputies:

“I want to be very clear neither of these two occupants had anything to do with this ambush or criminal activity. And I’m extremely grateful that they were not injured and how they immediately returned to the scene as instructed by Deputy Thoman.”

The sheriff took aim at the fact that the deceased suspect happened to be out on bond at the time of the ambush, highlighting the suspect’s long criminal record and saying something is awry when people like that can walk out of jail on bond:

“This case is a perfect example of what is wrong with our criminal justice system. When a registered career criminal with 23 felony charges, 17 misdemeanor charges, multiple convictions for violent offenses, and two active and pending drug trafficking cases is out on the streets where he can attempt to kill our deputies and put other lives at risk – something is wrong with our system.”

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Got them! Two arrested after police say they ambushed an officer, targeted him in a shooting

(Originally published September 9th, 2021)

RENTON, WA – Two suspects have been arrested for allegedly opening fire from across an intersection on a Renton Police officer earlier in September, which investigators believe that the shooting was a targeted incident.

Luckily, neither the officer not any other bystander was injured during the volley of gunfire.

The incident happened just before 5:00 p.m. on September 7th near the intersection of Talbot Road and South Grady Way.

Renton Police Detective Robert Onishi said that one of their officers in a marked patrol unit had just stopped on Talbot Road South waiting to turn east on South Grady Way when she heard numerous gunshots going off.

Detective Onishi said that the officer ducked for cover while inside of her patrol vehicle:

“The first thing she did was duck for cover in her car. Then once the shooting stopped, she popped back up again, and people were pointing out a vehicle that was speeding off.”

It was later determined that the gunshots came from the Chevron parking lot near the intersection, and witnesses pointed out two suspects that were driving a red Kia who were reportedly trying to leave the scene after the shooting.

A short pursuit of the suspects ensued, and they were later taken into custody without further incident. The names of the suspects have not been released yet by officials, only noting that the suspected shooter is a 24-year-old man from Kirkland and that the driver is a 23-year-old man from Seattle.

When investigating the scene of the shooting, Detective Onishi said that as many as 15 gunshots were fired by the suspect during the incident:

“Turned out to be a pretty fair amount of gunfire. We recovered, I think, 15 casings in the parking lot there.”

Investigators also say that surveillance video recovered from the scene, that has no been released publicly yet due to it being an ongoing investigation, leads police to believe that the shooting incident was targeted directly at the officer in her patrol unit, according to Detective Onishi:

“There was no other indication that anybody else downrange there behaved as if they were the target of an attack.”

The brazen nature of the shooting is further emphasized by the fact that the incident occurred within one block from the Renton Police Department.

The suspected shooter has since been booked under charges of first-degree assault and drive by shooting and the driver was booked under charges of drive by shooting and attempting to elude pursuing police.

Officials are asking that anyone who witnessed the incident that has yet to be interviewed by police to please call the Renton Police Department at 425-430-7500 and reference case number 21-8883.

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This incident in Renton comes mere days after another officer was targeted in a shooting in Washington, which luckily the officer from the September 3rd incident was also unharmed. 

Here’s that previous report. 

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FEDERAL WAY, WA – A Federal Way Police officer was shot at while stopped at a traffic light earlier in September in what’s being described as an ambush. Luckily, the officer wasn’t injured during the incident, but the suspect is at large.

According to authorities, the incident occurred on September 3rd at approximately 3:25 p.m. while an unnamed officer was stopped at a traffic light on Pacific Highway South near S. 330th Street.

The officer, who was in a clearly marked police SUV was shot at, according to Federal Way Police Commander Kurt Schwan, after a vehicle pulled up alongside the officer and an occupant inside opened fire.

Despite the police SUV being struck multiple times by the suspect’s gunfire during the incident, the officer was unharmed. The suspect’s vehicle, described as a silver sedan, then fled the scene and was able to elude police following a police pursuit.

Detectives are currently investigating the incident.

Please follow Law Enforcement Today as we continue to gather further insight into this developing case.

In other news regarding officers coming under fire, an Anchorage Police officer in Alaska was shot and injured during a struggle with a suspect earlier in September.

The incident occurred on the evening of September 3rd after police received a called about shots fired at approximately 10:15 p.m. in the 4100 block of Lena Court.

Witnesses had told police that there was some sort of a verbal altercation inside of a residence involving numerous people and that an intoxicated 29-year-old male, who was armed, left the residence and started firing shots in the area.

When police responded, they had searched the general area for approximately 40 minutes and could not find the suspect. After officers left, police received another call at approximately 11:40 p.m. that the suspect had returned to the area and the officers were dispatched once again.

press release from the Anchorage Police Department noted the following regarding the officers returning to the scene:

“Three officers approached the suspect and attempted to take him into custody. During this time, a struggle ensued, and an officer’s firearm was discharged striking another officer in the lower body.”

“Multiple officers immediately began rendering aid to the injured officer until our partners with the Anchorage Fire Department arrived. The officer was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries and in surgery. The suspect was also transported to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.”

The suspect, later identified as Justin Constantine, has since been charged with multiple counts of misconduct involving a weapon and violating conditions of release.

Chief Kenneth McCoy was glad that no officers were killed during the incident:

“We are dealing with a very serious situation where one of our officers has been shot. His prognosis is very good. I’m incredibly thankful we didn’t lose an officer tonight. Please keep him and his family in your prayers.”

Since an officer’s weapon was discharged during the incident, the Office of Special Prosecutions is reviewing the incident and the officer whose firearm was discharged was placed on a standard administrative leave for four days.

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