Orlando man arrested after shooting Polk County Sheriff’s Office deputy

Image credits: Polk County Sheriff’s Office

POLK COUNTY, Fla.– An Orlando man has been arrested and faces four felony and one misdemeanor charges after shooting a deputy at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday, October 12th.

41 year old Gabriel Batista of Orlando was charged with 1st degree attempted murder of LEO (2 counts, FL), written threat to kill (F2), resisting with violence (F3) and discharging a firearm into residential property (M1) .

Deputies responded to a residence in the Tanglewood Preserve subdivision in Davenport on Wednesday just after 1 p.m. 22:00 in reference to a family disturbance. Those deputies were D/S Nicole Lyons (15 years experience as a deputy) and D/S Harodis “Tony” Nunez (14 years experience).

The disturbance began over the phone and deputies later learned that Gabriel Batista informed one of the residents not to call the police or it would not end well.

Prior to deputies’ arrival, Batista appeared at the home and began knocking on doors and windows.

He called the resident and said the police would have to kill him in front of the house.

When the deputies arrived, Batista was gone, but he soon returned and confronted the deputies. He exited his vehicle with his hands behind his back.

The deputies gave verbal orders to Batista to show his hands. During this time, Deputy Lyons held his Taser and Deputy Nunez held his firearm.

Batista continued to hide his hands, disobeying the deputies’ lawful orders to show his hands, so Deputy Lyons attempted to subdue him with the Taser. When the Taser was fired, Batista brought a 9 mm handgun hidden behind his back toward the deputies and began firing at them.

Of the six shots fired by Batista, one deputy hit Nunez in the center of his chest. The bullet was stopped by the bulletproof vest that Nunez was wearing.

Deputy Nunez was able to get a shot off at Batista but missed. However, Batista quickly dropped his gun and surrendered and was immediately taken into custody by both deputies.

“I am very pleased to report that Deputy Nunez was released from the hospital this morning. He is sore but recovering. Domestic violence calls are among the most dangerous our deputies respond to. Gabriel asked us to kill him , and we would have granted his request if Deputy Nunez’s gun had not stopped. We will hold Gabriel accountable for his depraved violence against our deputies,” said Grady Judd, sheriff.

After his arrest, Batista told detectives that when he learned that law enforcement was responding to the residence, he chose to return to commit “used suicide.”

Three investigations are currently underway: An internal investigation by the PCSO’s Administrative Investigations Unit; and independent reviews by the Attorney General’s Office and the 10th Judicial Circuit Officer Involved Deadly Incident Task Force.

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