Two U.S. Marshals Task Force deputies shot in Sebring, Florida

7:48 PM, Nov 20, 2013   |    comments
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Video: 2 Deputy U.S. Marshals shot in Highlands County

Video: Sky 10 Video: 2 Deputy U.S. Marshals shot in Sebring, FL

Video: 2 Deputy U.S. Marshals shot during drug trafficking bust

 

Sebring, Florida -- Two U.S. Marshals Task Force deputies were shot while executing six warrants at the home of a "high level narcotics trafficking ring" on Wednesday morning in Sebring.

"They were dealing multi-kilograms of cocaine and ounces of crack cocaine," said Highlands Sheriff Susan Benton. 

Benton said in a press conference Wednesday the organization was centered in Highlands County and operated throughout Central Florida.

It was during U.S. Deputy Marshals' attempt to execute two of the warrants at a home off Lake Sebring Drive that turned violent.

"It was about 6 a.m. when I heard a lot of yelling," said nearby neighbor Kathy McLucas who was awakened by the commotion.

When the suspects refused to answer the door, a team of 15 law enforcement officers took action and as they tried to break down the front door that when shots rang out from inside.

"I hear pow, pow, pow, pow, and pow. I get on the phone dialing 911," recalled McLucas.

Two deputy U.S. Marshals were hit and have non-life-threatening injuries. 

One of the injured deputies was St. Lucie County Sheriff's Detective Paul Pearson, 33 -- who was working as a member of the U.S. Marshals Task Force -- had been shot in the shoulder. The other, was shot in the hand. One of the deputies remains at Florida Hospital Wednesday, but which one of the two is not clear.

Officials say they have five suspects in custody, but a sixth suspect remains at large.

The suspects are facing federal charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

Arrested are:

  • Robin Jean Guillaume, 29, of Avon Park, Florida
  • Alex Guerrier, 29, of Avon Park, Florida
  • Alphonsia Joycelyn Maxime, 23, of Avon Park, Florida
  • Cleophas A. Brown, 43, of Avon Park, Florida
  • Gibson LaPointe, 27, of Avon Park, Florida

Investigators do not know at this time which suspects opened fire on the officers.

Sky 10 video showed a heavy law enforcement presence in the neighborhood, with crime scene tape completely surrounding a home.

Neighbors say they aren't surprised this happened at this particular home.

"When you see cars coming in like that all times of the day. I'd be up at three in the morning and see them coming and going. [I knew] that's a drug house," McLucas said.

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