Police identify man shot by officer investigating hit-and-run crash

Veteran officer in Saturday morning shooting hit by suspect's bullet in 2008

By Jason Mealey - Producer/assignment editor
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Police have named the man facing charges in officer-involved shooting during the investigation of a hit-and-run accident on Saturday morning as 23-year old-Devon Spencer.

According to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, a tip into a early-morning crash on Moncrief Road led Officer Clifford Sames to a home on Frazier Street where four men were standing outside.

"An eyewitness indicated Spencer fired his weapon first and that Officer Sames returned fire," said JSO Chief of Detectives Adam Brown. "There was physical evidence at the scene that the suspect did have a weapon. That weapon is an AK-47 assault rifle commonly referred to on the street as a chopper."

Police say Spencer fired from an SUV in the front yard. Another witness gave Channel 4 a different account.

"They pulled up on him like they was coming to jump up on him," said Roosevelt Pickney, who said he witnessed the shooting while walking with his children. "The guy, he wasn't aiming anything.  He was turned like he was trying to hide something."

Police say Sames was not injured and fired five shots in return. Spencer ran, but was found in a shed and taken to UF Heath at Jacksonville. He has since been released.

Police say Spencer is a convicted felon for possession of cocaine in Duval county in August 2013. He's being charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Detectives say Spencer has refused to talk about the incident.

Sames is a 12-year veteran of the JSO. This was his second shooting incident, having returned fire after being shot in the neck by a suspect in September 2008.

Sames was placed on administrative leave, which is standard protocol.

"This was a routine follow up to a hit-and-run investigation. It wasn't even a felony hit-and-run," Brown said. "The officer's following that up and all of a sudden he finds himself in a deadly confrontation, so it does illustrate this is a very dangerous  job."

Brown says Sames has not given his full statement which is common in a police involved shooting. Brown says it will take a few days.

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