JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Police shot one man, took another into custody and were looking for at least one, possibly two more at Jacksonville International Airport on Wednesday afternoon.
Chief Tom Hackney said the SWAT team was following up on an auto theft and fleeing and attempting to elude that occurred May 7. In that case, several SWAT officers were behind a car trying to stop it, and the man inside resisted arrest, was later captured and found to be in possession of cocaine, Hackney said.
One of the men who was driving in that auto theft eluded officers, and an arrest warrant was issued for him, Hackney said. That led up to Wednesday's shooting, in which an arrest warrant was being followed up on by the SWAT team members.
They went to the 6500 block of Norwood Avenue on the Northside about 2:20 p.m. to find the suspect. Hackney said officers conducted surveillance and followed a car they believed the suspect was in. He said they verified his identity as the car drove into the rental car return parking lot at the airport.
Hackney said the car parked on the first level of the garage, and the driver of the vehicle stopped the car in an odd position, "almost in an attempt to see who might have been following him."
"The detectives at that point in time made a decision to take the suspect down after verifying again visually who he was," Hackney said.
He said officers blocked the suspect in, and he backed up his car, moving a police car directly behind him. Hackney said officers getting out of their car had to jump out of the suspect's way to avoid getting hit. The suspect's car hit another police car and a rental car, then continued to back through the parking garage, Hackney said.
One of the detectives fired three shots at the suspect's vehicle, all three of which struck the vehicle, Hackney said. He said that is a highly trafficked area for those at the airport.
"Their fear, these detectives at the scene, was that this is a subject who's already attempted to strike two other officers, auto theft suspect, the public safety is at risk," Hackney said. "That's why the use of deadly force was deployed."
The car continued to flee out of the parking lot, and a description was given via police radio to patrol officers on the Northside.
No officers were injured in the shooting.
Officers found the vehicle at Monaco Arms Apartments off Dunn Avenue. Hackney said two men got out of the car -- a 17-year-old man who was shot in the ankle at the airport, and a 27-year-old man who is the registered owner of the car. The teen's injuries were non-life-threatening. Hackney said neither was armed at the time.
He was described as 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighting 130 pounds. Anyone who knows his whereabouts is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.
Edward Rogers, the detective involved in the shooting, has been placed on paid administrative leave, as is standard procedure. Rogers is a nine-year veteran of the SWAT team.
Police said the airport shooting was connected to a lockdown earlier in the afternoon at Highlands Elementary School on the Northside.
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