LARGO – Pinellas County Sheriff’s detectives are investigating a deputy-involved shooting that occurred about 12:12 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27, in Largo.
According to detectives, Deputy Ethan Taylor was on routine patrol when he ran the tag of a gray 1994 Acura. The vehicle came back as a stolen vehicle reported out of St. Petersburg Police Department’s jurisdiction. Taylor requested backup and began to follow the vehicle.
The suspect’s vehicle pulled into a gas station located on the corner of 142nd Avenue N. and S. Belcher Road. The suspect then exited the vehicle, went into the gas station and then returned to his vehicle to pump gas.
Taylor and Deputy Lorie Fagan entered the gas station parking lot and began to approach the suspect near the gas pumps. The suspect noticed the deputies approaching him and put his vehicle in reverse. He then accelerated the gas, causing his vehicle to hit the unmarked car driven by Fagan.
The suspect then put the car in drive and attempted to exit the parking lot. Out of concern for officer safety and the safety of those in the area, Taylor began to fire shots at the suspect’s vehicle, the sheriff’s report said. The suspect’s vehicle then hit the curb and drove into the retention pond where it came to a stop.
The suspect, Bryant A. Collins, 32, of Clearwater was taken into custody and transported to the Pinellas County Jail where he will be charged with aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer.
No injuries were reported. Taylor, 47, and Fagan, 52, will be placed on routine paid administrative leave. Taylor has been employed with the Sheriff’s Office since June 1997 and Fagan since December 1986.
St. Petersburg police are investigating the stolen vehicle.