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June 2, 2012 — West Palm Beach

Deputies exchanged gunfire with carjacker Michael James Wallach during a long pursuit.

Wallach fired at least six shots at Palm Beach sheriff's deputies chasing him, including at a helicopter, and several more rounds where the chase ended in a residential neighborhood, authorities said. Cpl. Paul Ellis fired five rounds during an initial exchange. Deputy Thomas Walton fired during a second exchange. Deputy Cleveland Gay fired five rounds as Wallach took cover behind a Chevy Blazer. Detective Rafael Bejarano arrived and fired three times.

Wallach was hit in the left shoulder and thigh. He was sentenced to 10 life terms for attempted murder of an officer, armed carjacking and armed burglary, plus additional time for theft charges. Read more

At his trial, he said that he had not wanted to go back to jail and suffered from PTSD from his previous prison time. Wallach had been on the run since June 2011, when he fled rather than serve a five-year term for aggravated battery.

This was the 56th police shooting in Florida in 2012.

Two days earlier, one officer shot one person in Jacksonville .

Two days later, two officers shot one person in Greenacres .

7 ways this case compares to others

  1. Deputy Walton 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. Wallach fired shots at police, which happened in 15 percent of shootings.
  3. Wallach was one of 25 people who were shot after telling someone that he wouldn't go to jail or back to prison.
  4. Wallach was armed with a firearm. That’s true of almost half the people shot.
  5. Wallach was suspected of being involved in an armed robbery. That's true in 1 of every 9 police .
  6. Wallach was fleeing from police or a crime scene, which is true in a quarter of shootings.
  7. Officers was chasing Wallach on foot before shooting him. Officers shot 105 people during foot pursuits.

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