10News Exclusive: Uber driver feared for life in WingHouse shootout

10News exclusive: Interview with Uber driver involved in shootout

An Uber driver caught in the middle of a shootout between a suspect and Pinellas County deputies thought he was going to die.

Sheldon Burke's car is riddled with bullet holes after last week's shooting outside WingHouse on Ulmerton Boulevard. Deputies had been following his vehicle because his passenger, Richard Xavier Summers, was wanted.

Investigators say they followed and watched Summers pick up a check, then go to a bank to cash it and then watched at the two went for a bite to eat.

Then officers decided to take Summers down in a traffic stop outside the WingHouse parking lot.

Sheldon said Summers spoke before stepping out of the car with his gun.

"At that point in time, Richard looked at me and said, 'Sheldon, I'm not going down like this.' He said it twice."

Burke demonstrated how he had his head down as deputies fired. If he had had his head up, he would have been struck in the back of the head.


While the shooting was totally justifiable, the location for the takedown was not a good choice, according to Burke's attorney John Trevena.

"I think it was extremely reckless, bullets whizzing by his head."

Sheriff Bob Gualiteri says detectives did what they had to do.

"Thankfully, no one was hurt. They had no choice."

Burke says he still hasn't been contacted by the sheriff's office about repairing his vehicle.

 

© 2017 WTSP-TV


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