Lee County sniper uses a human tripod to shoot, kill bank robbery suspect between two hostages

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Newly released surveillance video shows the moments an armed man who had taken two people into custody during a bank robbery was shot and killed by a Lee County Sheriff’s Office sniper.

The sniper’s bullet, which was fired from the lobby entrance, pierced a computer monitor and split the two hostages being held in the suspect’s arms to strike the suspect, the video showed.

The highly edited video, cuts between moments of surveillance footage and members of the Sheriff’s Office.

“We train for the worst-case scenario. We train for hostage negotiations and what the means going from worst-case to the best scenario,” Sheriff Carmine Marceno previously explained. “This is a very unfortunate incident; but I will tell you, the two hostages being safe was our top priority.”

According to the post, the suspect had a knife and claimed to have a bomb during the robbery, which happened on February 6 at a Bank of America location in Fort Myers. The footage showed the suspect tucked into a corner behind the counter, with the two hostages positioned in front of him.

Just inside the lobby and outside the bank were members of the Sheriff’s Office Special Operations Unit, a Hostage Negotiations Team, and Patrol Bureau, some of who were dressed in tactical gear.

The video offers a look over the shoulder of the sniper as he takes aim with his rifle supported on the shoulder of the man in front of him. The angle provides a hint of the limited view of the suspect and how he was shielded by the monitor.

The scene cuts to the moment the sniper takes his shot, and the .308-caliber bullet crosses the full length of the lobby and cuts right through the monitor. The suspect collapses instantly.

Flash bang devices were soon deployed, and the members of the Special Unit Team rushed in to ensure the hostages were safe and that the suspect was not a threat, Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Lt. Todd Ulmer noted.

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“I couldn’t be more proud of the men and women of law enforcement today,” Marceno said on the day of the robbery. “How you train is how you perform, and this is exactly what we train for.”

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