Dead is Timothy Earl Jackson, 33, of St. Petersburg.
According to police, at 8:45 p.m. Monday, a victim called police to report that two men blocked the white Toyota pick-up truck he was driving in the 4800 block of 20th Avenue South in St. Petersburg and that one pointed a black semi-automatic gun at him then stole his vehicle.
In the early morning hours of Wednesday, a St. Petersburg police officer “spotted the stolen truck at the Choice Food Store” located at the corner of 5th Avenue North and 34th Street North.”
While under surveillance, according to police reports, the truck appeared to have a flat front tire. Moving slowly, the driver left the store and eventually turned east into a neighborhood alleyway behind 2940 Freemont Terrace S.
Two police cruisers followed the stolen vehicle into the alleyway and after one marked police car pulled in behind the truck to block it as part of the process of setting up a perimeter, Jackson “got out of the [truck], fired one round in the front of the [police cruiser] and another round on top of the hood,” said St. Petersburg Police Chief Anthony Holloway during a Wednesday morning press conference.
According to police, two officers fired back.
“The officer was inside the vehicle” when the suspect, Jackson, fired, said Holloway. “The officer never got a chance to get out of the car before Jackson fired upon him.”
The timeframe from when the stolen vehicle was spotted to when shots were exchanged was from three to five minutes, said Holloway.
The police chief has spoken to both officers involved and “they are OK,” he said. The officers involved are 10-year veteran Matthew Laliberte and three-year veteran Andre Sousa.
At the shooting scene, “officers administered CPR to Jackson,” said Holloway. Jackson was “transported to Bayfront Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.”
The exact number of rounds fired by Jackson or the two officers was not known at the time of the press conference as the scene was still being processed, said Holloway. A black semi-automatic handgun that matched the same description as the one reported by the victim of Monday’s car jacking was found at the scene on Wednesday.
“We’re not saying [Jackson] is the suspect in the car jacking because the victim did not identify the person” from the incident on Monday, said Holloway. “We’re just saying that Jackson was in the vehicle that was car jacked.”
The police department will be conducting a criminal investigation and the Office of Professional Standards will be doing their routine workflow in the officer-involved shooting, said Holloway. Officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative duty pending the outcome of the investigation.In addition, the office of the State Attorney will also be reviewing the case.
“We are asking everyone out there, if you have any video or information about the shooting, please contact us because we want to make sure we do a thorough report,” said Holloway.