SARASOTA, Florida. – The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a fatal shooting involving a deputy after deputies say a gunman, accused of threatening his girlfriend with a gun, pointed a semi-automatic weapon at them as they tried to defuse the situation.
According to Sheriff Kurt Hoffman, the agency received a 911 call shortly after 9 a.m. from a woman who said she woke up with her boyfriend pointing a gun at her face.
Deputies who arrived at the scene say they made contact with the suspect, Brian Underwood, 47, and asked him to come out of the house. At first, he did not comply with the orders of the deputies.
Eventually, deputies say they reached Underwood on the phone and convinced him to go to a window where they could see him.
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a shooting involving an officer. Photo courtesy of Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff Hoffman says Underwood stood at the window with his hands in the air and motioned for deputies to enter the house while the victim was barricaded in the back bedroom at the time.
According to SCSO, four deputies entered the house and told Underwood to keep his hands up and tried to defuse the situation.
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At that time, Sheriff Hoffman says the suspect reached behind his back and pulled out a semi-automatic firearm and had it in the down position and chambered a cartridge by depressing the slide of the firearm.
As the gun came in the raised position toward the deputies who were near the parlor door, two of the deputies fired at the suspect and killed him, according to Sheriff Hoffman.
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a fatal shooting involving a deputy.
Sheriff Hoffman says deputies have been called to the Tarawa Drive home multiple times in the past, but none of those situations led to an arrest.
According to SCSO, Underwood was previously arrested for household battery in 2014 in Citrus County.
Sheriff Hoffman says Underwood’s mother was home during the incident. He said she walked out of the residence during the disturbances and left the door ajar for deputies to enter.
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This is the second fatal domestic incident MPs have been involved in in the past ten days which has resulted in an MP deploying a gun. Sheriff Hoffman said there was a third incident Friday in Venice, in which deputies used non-lethal force to subdue a man accused of stabbing his girlfriend and pet to death, after stating that he had threatened them with a knife. The man, who was bleeding before the arrival of the deputies, ended up dying soon after.
“It’s always a very dangerous profession and we handle these calls as professionally as possible and it’s a shame that that and the call a few days ago ended in the death of the suspect, but that’s the choice they made and the deputies responded with what appears to be appropriate,” Sheriff Hoffman said.
The four deputies involved and the woman who called 911 are considered victims of aggravated assault and their identities will not be released.