3 Clay County deputies fire at man who came to door with gun

Couple's fight leads to deadly shooting involving 3 deputies

By Jennifer Ready - Reporter, Scott Johnson - Reporter, Ronnie Rodgers - Associate Producer, Crystal Chen - Assignment editor/reporter

ORANGE PARK, Fla. - An overnight domestic disturbance call in Orange Park ended with a deadly shooting of a homeowner involving Clay County deputies, the Sheriff's Office said.

Three deputies opened fire, killing a man who they said had pulled a gun on them outside a home on Stagecoach Drive near Tanglewood Boulevard, according to the Clay County Sheriff's Office. No deputies were injured.

According to the Sheriff's Office, a woman called deputies for help about 1 a.m., saying a fight with the man escalated to violence. The two were in a relationship, but it is unknown if they were married.

Deputies met with the woman at a park nearby, away from the home, and learned that a preteen was still inside the house. That's when they went to the home where the fight broke out.

Deputies were confronted outside by the man with a gun in hand. Deputies opened fire, killing the man when he pulled the gun on them, according to the Sheriff's Office.

The Sheriff's Office said the deputies involved in the shooting were Deputy Brandon Senters, a six-year veteran of the agency, and Deputies Jacob Adams and Michael Tapawan, both of whom were hired last year.

Neighbor Yvonne Hamlow, who heard the gunfire, said the loud bangs woke her up.

“I heard something say, ‘Bang, bang, bang, bang’ about six times. I didn’t know what was going on, you know. I said, 'Oh my, something's going on.' I heard all them shots. It sounded like there was a shooting right behind the house," Hamlow recalled. "I got scared and I turned off the TV, went in the back bedroom and got in the bed with no lights on.”

The owner of the property where the shooting happened had not heard about it until speaking with News4Jax. He said that a man and woman live there with a preteen daughter and he could not confirm if that was the same family that was involved.  He did say he knew the man who lived there had weapons.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has taken over the investigation, which is standard practice for deputy-involved shootings in Clay County.

Agents spend several hours at the home and in neighboring yards collecting evidence. Stagecoach Drive remained closed until midmorning Wednesday as investigators combed through the neighborhood. School bus routes were not affected, although parents were encouraged to escort children to school and use extra caution while deputies continue their investigation.

This was the second fatal shooting of a suspect in recent months by Clay County deputies. In February, deputies shot and killed an armed 18-year-old during a traffic stop on Blanding Boulevard. The FDLE is also investigating that incident.

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