Sheriff’s deputies in Florida shot a man in the leg while he was trying to get a cigarette out of his mother’s car in the driveway of their home. Roy Middleton, 60, was bent over in the car searching for the cigarette when a voice ordered him to, “Get your hands where I can see them.” He claims that he backed out of the car with his hands in the air, but when he turned to face the deputies, they shot him.
“It was like a firing squad,” he said. “Bullets were flying everywhere.”
The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office declined to comment about the incident.
The deputies have been placed on paid administrative leave and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting, PNJ reported.
Middleton is still in the hospital recovering from his injuries. “I’m just glad they didn’t hit me here or here,” he said, pointing toward his head and chest. “My mother’s car is full of bullet holes though. My wife had to go and get a rental.”
Several of Middleton’s neighbors heard the commotion, but they weren’t really sure what had happened. A teenage girl who saw part of the incident said that Middleton didn’t do anything to provoke the deputies. “He wasn’t belligerent or anything,“ she said.
Middleton said the deputies never offered him an explanation or an apology.
“Even if they thought the car was stolen, all they had to do was run the license plate,” he said. “They would have seen that that car belonged there.”