Deputies shoot, kill armed man at Tampa apartment complex
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) is investigating after three Hillsborough County deputies were involved in the fatal shooting of an armed man at a Tampa apartment complex early Sunday morning.
According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were called to the Bristol Bay Apartments, located at 4709 Bristol Bay Way in Tampa, shortly before 12:45 a.m. to investigate reports of shots fired.
Upon arrival, deputies say they learned that two men had gotten into a fight over a woman at a party earlier in the night and the confrontation moved outside. That’s when deputies say Jonathan Huertas Reyes, 32, shot at the other man involved multiple times, but missed.
Deputies located Huertas Reyes at the apartment complex, but say he ignored them when they tried to speak with him and led them on a foot chase through the property.
According to HCSO, a deputy tried to get Huertas Reyes to obey commands by pulling out an agency-issued Taser. That’s when deputies say Huertas Reyes pulled a gun from a fanny pack he was wearing and pointed it at his head.
According to Chief Deputy Donna Lusczynski, Huertas Reyes said he might as well kill himself because he knows he is going to jail for firing at the other man.
Law enforcement officers and cars outside Tampa apartment complex were a suspect was shot and killed by deputies.
Onlookers who saw the suspect with the gun shouted at Huertas Reyes in English and Spanish to drop the weapon, according to HCSO. A bilingual deputy also began speaking with Huertas Reyes and encouraged him to walk toward law enforcement without the gun in his hand.
Deputies say Huertas Reyes did put the firearm down, but refused to walk toward the deputies. Lusczynski says Reyes eventually picked the gun back up and deputies shot him when he pointed the firearm at them.
According to HCSO, deputies immediately began lifesaving efforts and used an AED on Huertas Reyes. He was taken to Tampa General Hospital where he was pronounced deceased.
According to Lusczynski, Huertas Reyes has been previously arrested on charges of domestic battery and domestic battery involving strangulation.
She says no deputies or other citizens were hurt during the incident.
"It could’ve been a much worse situation if our deputies hadn’t taken action," Lusczynski added.
Per agency policy, the three deputies involved in the shooting, Sergeant Benjamin Kenney, Deputy Nicholas Scudder and Deputy Jeff Louis, have been placed on administrative leave. None of the deputies have any prior use of deadly force.