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Sep. 26, 2011 — St. Petersburg

Around 1:40 a.m., several officers were investigating an empty vehicle near Jungle Prada park.

They thought there might be marijuana in the car. Officer Ruben DeJesus and another officer spotted two men on a bench, drinking. One man submitted to a pat down. Jared Speakman, 18, questioned their authority. DeJesus spotted the butt of a handgun sticking out of his pants pocket.

DeJesus tried to grab the gun and the two struggled, rolling down an embankment. DeJesus lost control of Speakman's .22-caliber handgun and, in the dark, drew his service weapon and fired four times. Speakman was fatally wounded, struck in the torso and right thigh. Read more

Six spent shell casings were found in Speakman's pocket. The gun itself was not loaded. He did not have a concealed weapons permit. Speakman's mother sued the city and the officers. The incident came during a year when three St. Petersburg police officers had been killed by gunfire.

This was the 95th police shooting in Florida in 2011.

Four days earlier, one officer shot one person in Tallahassee .

One day later, one officer shot one person in Weeki Wachee .

6 ways this case compares to others

  1. Officer DeJesus was involved in one other shooting from 2009 to 2014. Eighty-five officers were involved in more than one shooting during that time period.
  2. Officer approached Speakman after he was suspected of committing a minor crime. That’s true in 1 of every 12 cases.
  3. Speakman was armed with a firearm. That’s true of almost half the people shot.
  4. Speakman was shot after resisting arrest. A total of 114 people were shot while resisting arrest.
  5. Speakman was drinking alcohol before being shot. That’s true in about 10 percent of police shootings.
  6. A civil lawsuit was filed in response to Speakman's shooting. Ninety other cases led to lawsuits.

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