Roy Middleton shot in his driveway by Escambia County deputies, family claims 17 shell casings found

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) -- A pair of Florida Panhandle deputies shot and wounded an unarmed man in his driveway over the weekend.

Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan said during a news conference Monday that two deputies responded to a 911 call about a possible burglary early Saturday morning and found Roy Middleton, 60, searching through the car.

The deputies reported that they told Middleton to show his hands multiple times, but he eventually lunged out of the car and spun toward them.

Fearing for their safety, the deputies opened fire, hitting Middleton in the leg.

"As much as we are trained and as much as officers - which have Type A personalities - like to say we are in control, we are not," Morgan said.

During the news conference, Morgan played the 911 call made by a neighbor, along with the corresponding radio traffic from officers on the scene.

Middleton has said he was searching his mother's Lincoln Town Car for a loose cigarette when the deputies approached.

When he backed out of the vehicle, he had his car keys in his hand with a metal flashlight attached.

Middleton's mother, 77-year-old Ceola Walker, had been sleeping but awoke to disturbance outside the home.

"I heard the shots," Walker said. "(The deputies) told me to close the door and not come out. They called an ambulance for him."

Middleton suffered broken bones in his left thigh that will require a metal rod. Walker expects her son to be out of the hospital later this week.

Family members told the Pensacola News-Journal that they've found 17 shell casings around the driveway, along with bullet holes in the car.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating. The deputies involved have been placed on paid administrative leave, as is standard in deputy-involved shootings.


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