Photo by Monivette Cordeiro
An Orange County deputy is in stable condition Tuesday after being shot multiple times by a suspect who was later killed.
Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings says Sgt. Richard Stelter, 46, was shot while trying to serve a warrant on a fugitive with three other deputies on the investigative surveillance squad around 11:42 a.m. in an apartment complex near Americana Boulevard and Rio Grande Avenue. The 20-year-old suspect was wanted for allegedly violating his probation and several robberies involving elderly women who were injured when their purses were snatched.
The deputies found the suspect in a vehicle and attempted to "tactically park" the vehicle, Demings says at a news conference. The suspect began firing at the deputies first and hit Stelter. Deputies returned fire and ultimately killed the suspect. Demings says there was a young woman in the same vehicle as the suspect who may have received a minor wound. The Sheriff's Office is not identifying the suspect at this time because the suspect's next of kin has not been notified. Demings says his department and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement will do a concurrent investigation of the shooting.
Stelter, who's been with OCSO since 1996, was taken to the Orlando Regional Medical Center and is in relatively good spirits, Demings says. The 20-year-old suspect was previously convicted for attempted murder and served three years for that sentence in prison. Demings says the suspect was recently released when he began participating in the robberies.
"Today those violent tendencies led to his death," the sheriff says.