VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — Deputies in Volusia County shared more details Friday over a deputy-involved shooting in June involving two children.
Investigators said a 12-year-old and 14-year-old, who both ran away from a group home, broke into a nearby home and armed themselves with guns.
Deputies said the two started firing at them, prompting deputies to return fire.
One of the deputies involved shared his story and gave new details about the shootout.
Both children, identified as Nicole Jackson, 14, and Travis O’Brien, 12, fired at deputies several times while deputies tried to peacefully resolve the incident, according to Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood. No deputies were injured.
Deputies said both Jackson and O’Brien are charged with attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer and armed burglary of a dwelling.
The homeowner told deputies that no one should have been at the home, and that there was a handgun, a shotgun and an AK-47 inside, along with a large amount of ammunition.
The shootout was something one 13-year veteran, second-generation deputy and father said he’s never seen before.
He said when he got home safely that night, the first thing he did was hug his family tight.
Volusia County Sgt. Donnie Maxwell took cover behind a large oak tree that would later be riddled with bullets.
“I do think based on that night, it changed me,” Maxwell said. “It changed every single deputy that was there.”
He said seeing two middle schoolers wield a shotgun, pistol and AK-47, cursing out deputies and taking advanced tactical positions inside a home, like the ones he and his fellow deputies use in their training, was something he’d never imagine he’d see.
“There’s no reason for children to know how to use these weapons,” he said.
The gunfire did not deter him from his main goal: making sure everyone went home safe.
A father himself, he says he ran to provide first aid to the girl once she was hit.
Maxwell said he’s relieved everyone was able to walk away that night without any serious harm.
“I am so proud of every single deputy that was there,” he said. “They had my back I had theirs.”
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