06/27/2007

Fla. officers shoot suspects to avoid being run over

By Sallie James and Sofia Santana
The Sun-Sentinel

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. - Police on Tuesday evening seriously wounded a person they deemed "suspicious," but the exact circumstances of the shooting were not immediately clear, police officials said.

Bike patrol officers were outside 24 Hour Fitness, 9800 W. Atlantic Ave., about 7 p.m. because of several car burglaries reported there earlier in the day, officials said.

The officers saw two people whose names and ages police did not release Tuesday in a gold Dodge Caliber behind the building and thought they looked suspicious, said Sgt. Joe McHugh, Coral Springs police spokesman.

As the officers approached the car, the driver hit the gas and moved toward the officers, McHugh said.

"The officers felt that they were going to get run over," he said, adding that this scenario is based on preliminary information.

At this point, police said, one of the officers opened fire on the duo.

One of them, who apparently was outside of the car, was wounded, while the other drove away in the Caliber, McHugh said.

Police chased the Caliber and fired shots at it, McHugh said.

With the tires and the driver's side window shot out, the car stopped in the southbound lanes of University Drive, just south of Atlantic Boulevard.

The wounded person was taken to North Broward Medical Center in serious condition, while the person driving the Caliber was not seriously injured, McHugh said. 

Copyright 2007 Sun-Sentinel Company

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