DeLand, FL – Update: The identity of the deceased is Mario Simoes, 45, DeLand.
VCSO deputies who fired are: Deputy Brant Lickiss, 26, hire date July 7, 2014; and Sgt. Mike Chilcot, 49, hire date Oct. 18, 1993.
The VCSO office reports, a preliminary investigation indicates deputies and police called for Simoes to drop the gun and/or show his hands in excess of 30 times in a span of about 2 minutes leading up to the moment they fired.
The DeLand Police Department officer involved in Sunday’s shooting is Officer Jason Floryance, hire date August 29, 2005.
Earlier Reporting: An armed man who refused to drop his gun at the command of 2 Volusia County Sheriff’s deputies and a DeLand police officer was fatally shot Sunday evening.
According to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office (VCSO), the 45-year-old man fired several shots at a DeLand law office and later crashed at a high speed into a pickup truck before being fatally shot by the officers. He was pronounced dead at the scene near Amelia Avenue and Old Daytona Road, behind Publix grocery store and in front of a row of homes where he crashed his speeding Mercedes Benz.
“We have 3 independent witnesses who say it felt like 2 minutes, they just kept hearing deputies and DeLand police officers saying ‘Drop the gun, drop the gun, drop the gun,’ before he was fatally shot,” Sheriff Mike Chitwood told reporters in a news briefing at the scene.
The VCSO reports, the incident began just after 5 PM, Sunday, March 19, when a 3rd party reported the man was at his wife’s law office at 919 Biscayne Blvd., “shooting up the place” and was possibly suicidal. The caller said the suspect had been drinking and was very distraught over the couple’s marital issues.
As deputies and DeLand officers arrived on scene, the suspect fled in his car at high speeds estimated up to 100 mph. After hitting stop sticks as he fled west on Old Daytona Road, he crashed into a Ford pickup driven by a husband and wife leaving the nearby Lowe’s store.
Deputies and officers approached the crash scene and saw the suspect appeared to be reloading his gun. After he refused the repeated commands to drop the weapon and move, the 2 deputies and 1 police officer all fired to stop the threat.
Acting DeLand Police Chief Randel Henderson said the agency’s police officers receive training annually on how to handle situations involving people who are suicidal, but ultimately law enforcement officials have to make quick decisions.
“We deal with the complexities of human behavior,” said Henderson. “We never know at any given time what someone’s thinking, what’s going to punch their buttons and what’s going to make them react. (Officers and deputies) very quickly have to look at a scenario that unfolds around them and act accordingly. We go out every day and we don’t know what we’re dealing with.”
The husband and wife in the truck were able to walk away from the crash, but were taken to an area hospital to get checked out.
The identity of the deceased, as well as the names of the deputies involved, will be released in a future update. All 3 are being temporarily placed on paid leave as is customary during deputy- and officer-involved shootings.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting and the Florida Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.
Updates will be given as more information becomes available.
Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.