WESLEY CHAPEL, Fla. – One man was killed, and a Florida Highway Patrol trooper was injured after a shootout in Wesley Chapel, according to investigators.
The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office first broke the story on Saturday morning, saying it was assisting with an investigation into a shooting involving an FHP trooper.
According to investigators, on Saturday, at approximately 3:15 AM, an FHP Trooper on patrol along I-75 came upon two pickup trucks with two adult males near the northbound 279 mile marker.
The men appeared to be attempting to steal the second truck or items within the vehicle, troopers say.
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The men then fled northbound on I-75 in their pickup truck with the Trooper in pursuit.
As the pursuit continued, the men discharged a firearm several times from their vehicle, striking a tanker truck traveling northbound also.
Upon reaching SR-50, the men reversed course and began traveling southbound on I-75, where two additional Troopers joined the pursuit.
As the men reached Overpass Road, they exited the interstate, and a Trooper successfully performed a PIT maneuver which terminated the pursuit.
The two men then fled on foot towards a wooded area just south of Overpass Road, where one man surrendered to a Trooper while simultaneously the other man produced a handgun.
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Shots were exchanged between the second Trooper and the assailant.
The Trooper was struck in the torso, while the assailant was struck and suffered fatal injuries at the scene. The Trooper was airlifted to an area hospital and is listed in stable condition.
Agents from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, along with members of the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, the Pasco Sheriff’s Crime Scene Unit, and the Hernando County Sheriff’s Crime Unit are investigating the incident.
Charges against the second assailant apprehended by Troopers, who was also transported to an area hospital for medical care, are pending.
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