A 21-year-old man was fatally shot and a 41-year-old Eustis police officer was shot in the leg Wednesday afternoon at an AutoZone store, the Eustis Police Department said.
Shortly before 3 p.m., Dillan Shane Ezell walked into the Bay Street store armed with what police thought was a handgun, so they evacuated the store, Eustis police spokesman Jim Franquiz said.
Ezell walked out of the store and made the sign of the cross while raising the gun, Franquiz said. Police said they shot Ezell after he didn't obey their orders.
Investigators said Thursday that Ezell was armed with a pellet gun and that Toler was struck by a fellow officer's bullet that ricocheted off a concrete pylon.
Investigators said Ezell died while being taken to a hospital. It's unknown how many times he was shot.
Eustis police Sgt. Kenneth Toler was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center in stable condition, Franquiz said. He has since been released.
Ezell, who lived with his mother and grandmother, was unable to find a job and had been suffering from severe depression, said Jeff Ezell, the man's uncle.
A suicide note was discovered taped to a computer at the home, which is several blocks from the store.
"I think his plan was to try to end his life," Jeff Ezell said. "He knew that that would happen."
Ezell's grandmother had tried to secure insurance coverage to get him counseling, Jeff Ezell said.
"He needed help, and he just didn't get a chance to get it and he does this," he said. "He was a good kid."
Jeff Ezell said his nephew had access to a BB gun.
Three officers were placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard in police shootings.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting.
On @WFTV Family member of suspect killed in Eustis Autozone shootout told me family is devastated, sorry for actions of 21 yr old for whom they’d been trying to get mental health help pic.twitter.com/OLBNwICv0u— Angela Jacobs WFTV (@AngelaJacobsTV) June 13, 2018
CONFIRMED BY POLICE: The suspect who shot a Eustis Police officer died on the way to the hospital. His name is Dillan Shane Ezell, 21. His family says he left a suicide note before pulling off this “suicide by cop stunt.” Live update in minutes on @WFTV at 6. pic.twitter.com/hGZxFTGSdq— Lauren Seabrook (@LSeabrookWFTV) June 13, 2018
The Eustis Police officer who was shot in the leg is stable at this time. Police say the suspect, Dillan Shane Ezell, 22, did the sign of the cross before gunfire was exchanged. We’re trying to get an update on the suspect’s condition for our next live report on @WFTV at 5pm. pic.twitter.com/W4cmdNK3dp— Lauren Seabrook (@LSeabrookWFTV) June 13, 2018
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