JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A man involved in a domestic dispute at a room of an Argyle Forest hotel was shot and killed by a police officer during a confrontation Tuesday afternoon, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.
According to JSO Chief of Investigations T.K. Waters, there was an ongoing domestic disturbance at the Quality Inn on Youngerman Circle, starting around 6:30 a.m. Tuesday. Waters said a woman called officers there several more times, the last time shortly after 12:30 p.m.
Waters said the man, later identified as 32-year-old Michael Leon Hughes, had forced his way back into the room after he had left earlier. When two officers arrived, Hughes refused to leave. Waters said the officers tried to take Hughes into custody and there was a more than 60-second fight with one of the officers, during which time the man yelled he was going to kill him.
According to Waters, Hughes got control of Officer J. H. Wing’s Taser and stunned him once and then the officer fired several shots. Hughes lunged at the officer again, and the officer fired several more shots, Waters said.
When Hughes collapsed, the officer handcuffed him and performed CPR until rescue personnel arrived and determined that he was dead.
Wing, who has been with JSO for two years, suffered minor injuries. He was placed on administrative leave during the investigation, which is standard procedure. The second officer did not fire his weapon. Waters said both officers were wearing body cameras.
#JSO is on the scene of an officer involved shooting in the 6100 block of Youngerman Circle. Minor injuries to the officer, the suspect is deceased. More to come on the incident as the investigation unfolds. pic.twitter.com/8z66MjnChe— Jax Sheriff's Office (@JSOPIO) March 30, 2021
“Heard a couple shots. Sure enough, there was a body right there, lying beneath the second floor,” hotel guest Eli Hernandez told News4Jax. “I prayed for the man.”
A woman staying in a hotel across the street posted on Facebook that she heard the gunfire.
“All I heard was three gunshots at around 1 p.m. and then tons of cops within minutes. That’s it,” she wrote.
James Dawson, who said he lives at the hotel, told News4Jax the incident began as an argument between a couple.
“A girlfriend and a boyfriend having a verbal dispute. It was nothing physical at all. It was strictly verbal. He wanted to get in and she was upset with him,” he said.
Dawson said he was 10 feet away from the room and could hear the scuffle.
“Basically yelling and ‘get off me’ and stuff like that,” he said.
Dawson questioned what the second officer was doing during the scuffle.
“Like if the other cop had a Taser, why didn’t he grab his Taser and Tase him?” Dawson said.
During a news conference, Waters said: “Both officers we’re trying to gain control of the suspect that they were trying to arrest. He did not want to be arrested, so he fought. They both fought, trying to control him, but they weren’t successful in doing that. He was able to get the Taser and then use that Taser on our officer.”
This was the third police-involved shooting in Jacksonville in 2021 and the second that ended with a death.