A man who was a suspect in a mass shooting in Lakeland, Florida, last week was shot and killed by a police officer after he fled police, hijacked a car, and crashed into a business on Monday.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said in a media briefing Monday that officers from the Lakeland Police Department were surveilling 21-year-old Alex Greene in Eagle Lake when the man hopped into a white Chevrolet Silverado and fled police.
Police pursued Greene for about 15 minutes when one officer performed a pit maneuver that caused Greene to stop his car in Winter Haven.
The man then ran off on foot into traffic with police running after him.
“Why he and the captain weren’t run over is just the grace of God, because traffic was all over the place,” said Judd.
Judd said that the man was unable to outrun officers so he stole a car from an elderly lady who had left her automobile on outside of a restaurant. One of the officers saw Greene stealing the car and drew his weapon while calling on him to stop the vehicle. When Greene allegedly drove the vehicle towards the officer, he shot at the man six times.
After the man was shot, he crashed his car into a building, causing extensive damage.
Greene was later declared deceased at Winter Haven hospital.
The suspect had other outstanding warrants, but investigators said he was also wanted as a suspect in a drive-by shooting in the city of Lakeland where 11 people were injured. Video from that shooting was captured by a nearby surveillance video camera. Two people were in critical condition from that shooting.
Investigators said they were very confident he was involved, but they did not divulge details about that part of the investigation.
Police later said they recovered two handguns, cocaine, marijuana, and almost $3,000 in cash from the vehicle that Greene used to flee from police.
“Listen, only the wicked flee when the police try to stop you,” said Judd to reporters.
“And that’s what occurred here. Had he simply not run from us, not fled, then none of this would have happened. As the chief said, and it’s my phrase, we didn’t choose to shoot him, he chose for us to to shoot him, with his conduct,” he added.
Judd showed reporters a photograph of Greene, in which he was smiling while holding a large wad of cash to his face.
“He chose for this to be the end,” Judd concluded.
Here’s more about the lethal police action:
Guns, drugs, cash recovered from suspect’s car in Winter Haven chasewww.youtube.com
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