JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Two police officers in Jacksonville fatally shot a man on Tuesday after authorities say the victim pulled a gun and got into a struggle with them.
The shooting occurred as the Jacksonville sheriff’s officers were working an eviction case at an apartment complex on the city’s west side.
The suspect, whom police did not identify, was lying on the patio of the empty apartment with a comforter when officers found him, Sheriff’s Office Director Tom Hackney said.
“The subject … throws the comforter back, picks up a handgun, turns toward that officer and drives that handgun in his chest,” Hackney said.
Hackney said the two officers wrestled with the man until he broke loose and ran down a flight of stairs.
Hackney said the victim dropped the gun during the fight — it was found at the top of the stairs — but officers thought he was still armed. The officers, who were white, fired six times at the victim, who was black.
Hackney said neither officer, both veterans with more than two decades of service each, had ever been involved in a shooting.
Eric Block, an attorney representing the slain man’s family, identified him as 28-year-old D’Angelo Stallworth.
Stallworth was the father of three, and worked at UPS, Block said. He said Stallworth had one previous domestic violence incident, but that the case was dropped.
While Stallworth did not live at the apartment complex where the shooting occurred, the mother of one of his children did, said Block. The balcony on which he was found was shared by two apartments, the vacant one and another that may have belonged to Stallworth’s child’s mother, Block said.
He said so far there is no indication that race played a role in the shooting, and Stallworth’s family wants everyone to remain calm until the investigation is complete.
“We’re not blind to what’s going on in this country,” Block said, referring to recent police shootings.
“The family wants people to show their best at this horrible time, not their worst,” Block said.
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