Sheriff: Deputies feared for lives in shooting

Zephyrhills, Florida -- Pasco County deputies feared for their lives when they shot and killed an unarmed man during a drug investigation on Tuesday, according to Sheriff Chris Nocco.

An undercover deputy at first bought a large amount of illegal prescriptions pills from 41-year-old Jerry Brown of Lakeland, someone the agency had been investigating him for months. The sting was set up at at Big Ben's Tires, 4128 Gall Blvd.

The undercover detective then signaled for other deputies to arrest Brown, and he made a sudden movement as authorities told him to show his hands.

Detectives then fired and killed Brown. Later, investigators found out he was unarmed.

"Make no mistake about it," Nocco said. "When we are ordering commands to show me your hands, when we are telling somebody they need to comply and they make motions that are not, and make our detectives feel their lives are being threatened you have a millisecond to make a decision."

Brown has a violent criminal history including a kidnapping charge, and two armed robbery convictions.


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