MARION COUNTY, Fla. - Marion County deputies said they are looking for a man who attacked a deputy during a traffic stop Wednesday.
"When you're trying to get out of your patrol car and all that, you're not expecting someone to attack you, and that's what happened in this case," said Capt. James Pogue of the Marion County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies said the attacker was Tony Lee McKenzie.
According to deputies, McKenzie had just purchased a lottery ticket at a convenience store. As he drove away, he was pulled over by Deputy Eduardo
Bustamante for not using a seat belt.
Investigators said McKenzie punched Bustamante
twice in the face.
"Hits him with a right in the face, followed up by a left. Deputy goes down. Fight's on," said Pogue.
According to deputies, McKenzie and the deputy struggled, and at one point McKenzie even tried to grab the deputy's gun. When the deputy was able to draw his gun, McKenzie took off running.
"Deputy Bustamante tried to follow him, to capture him. But at that point he's got a laceration over his eye. He's bleeding, blurred vision. He was hit several times in the head. This was a violent confrontation," said Pogue.
McKenzie escaped. The deputy was taken to the hospital, where he received treatment and stitches for a gash on the head.
Channel 9 reporter Mark Joyella went to McKenzie's Ocala home and found that deputies aren't the only ones looking for him.
Douglas Seal told Joyella that the car McKenzie was driving belongs to him. He said he never gave permission for McKenzie to drive it.
Seal said McKenzie has a history of arrests and a suspended license and may have feared he was about to be arrested.
"I guess that was his best scenario, to try and get away. But I can't believe he did it," said Seal.