Domestic disputes are highly personal incidents that generally involve an argument, a disagreement, or tension between two individuals who are related by blood or marriage, have had intimate relations, or live together. They usually involve a long history of private altercations. However, on occasion, a domestic dispute leaves the sanctity of the home and affects the community. The dispute bleeds out into the community, causing a dangerous ripple effect.
FORT WALTON BEACH DEPUTY SHOT WHILE SERVING DV INJUNCTION
Back in September, a Fort Walton Beach man allegedly choked and pushed his wife while their infant son was in her arms. The wife tried to call the local police, and the man pushed her up against a wall and threatened her, saying, “Someone will be leaving in a coffin.”
The next day, the wife went down to the Fort Walton Beach courthouse and filed a domestic violence injunction. An injunction is essentially a restraining order. A Respondent cannot go near the Petitioner and must comply with other orders, such as surrendering deadly weapons like guns.
A Fort Walton Beach judge granted the injunction, and a deputy from the Okaloosa Sheriff’s Office went to the Law Office of Cotton & Gates to serve the injunction on the husband. Angered by the injunction, the husband withdrew his gun and shot the officer, killing him instantly.
This officer was well known within the legal community and he was well liked. I knew him personally, since he spent several years protecting me and everyone else at the Fort Walton Beach Courthouse and the Shalimar Courthouse Annex.
While in other types of cases, the plaintiff is usually required to serve an injunction on a defendant, the court provides a deputy to act as a process server in civil domestic violence complaints to avoid any altercation between the parties. This veteran deputy sheriff became an unfortunate target in this domestic dispute.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SUSPECT RESPONSIBLE FOR LOCKDOWN OF FIVE FORT WALTON BEACH SCHOOLS
One Wednesday in the end of August, a man was arguing with a family member in his front yard, only half a mile from multiple Fort Walton Beach schools such as Silver Sands School. While departing the scene, he fired a shot into the air. The sound of gunshots startled local students and teachers, causing both Silver Sands School and Liza Jackson Preparatory School to go into lockdown before classes started. Students needed to be escorted into the building by faculty when they arrived to ensure their safety.
The police were alerted the following Thursday that the man had returned to the same house, possibly with the same gun. The two schools, as well as Edwins Elementary School, Bruner Middle School, and Fort Walton Beach High School, went back into lockdown. The police surrounded the home and ordered the man to come out. He initially refused. The home, owned by a relative, was occupied only by the man and some dogs at the time. Police were unsure if any weapons were present. The Fort Walton Beach Police set up command at a nearby Home Depot and attempted to negotiate his surrender. When this failed, the Emergency Response Team shot tear gas into the home. The man then willingly left the home and was arrested for aggravated domestic battery, aggravated battery, discharging a firearm in public, and convicted felon in possession of a firearm.
ARRESTED FOR A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE OFFENSE IN FORT WALTON BEACH? DEFEND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CHARGES WITH THE BEST
When you are being accused of domestic violence, you want an intelligent, experienced, and talented Fort Walton Beach criminal defense attorney on your side. Stephen G. Cobb is one of only a few Board Certified Specialists in Florida Criminal Law statewide and in the only one based in Okaloosa County. He is prepared to help you fight false or unfair allegations as well as help you cut your losses, depending upon the facts and your wishes. To schedule a free consultation, call 850-651-6565 today.
Cobb Criminal Defense Law Firm1992 Lewis Turner Blvd, Suite 101-BFort Walton Beach, FL 32547