Fort Myers, Florida Officer & Suspect Killed In Gunfight | MassCops

Fort Myers, Florida Officer & Suspect Killed In Gunfight

Discussion in 'Line of Duty Death News' started by Inspector, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. Inspector

    Inspector Subscribing Member

    While Fort Myers Police Department's major Doug Baker said the department will hold off releasing the officer's name until his family is notified, he said he was in his 30's, was married and had three children.

    "He was a good guy," Baker said. "He'll be missed by his peers."

    Lee County Sheriff's Office public information officer said the officer was shot near Patio DeLeon.

    The body of the fallen officer has not been removed from the scene.
    5:39 a.m. update

    According to a Fort Myers Police Department release an officer was shot and killed after responding to a disturbance downtown at Main and Hendry Streets at 2:03 a.m. this morning.
    There was an exchange of gunfire and the suspect was shot and killed as well.

    The identity of the officer has not been released yet.

    The following roads are closed as an investigation is taking place:

    Broadway and Second
    Second and Hendry
    Main and Hendry
    Main and Broadway

    The roads are expected to be closed a good portion of the day. Police are asking people to avoid the area if possible.
    NEWS PRESS
     
  2. Inspector

    Inspector Subscribing Member

    Still no release on identification of the officer.

    [​IMG]
    A body is removed from the crime scene where a Fort Myers Police Officer was shot and killed early this morning, July 18, 2008, near Patio de Leon in downtown Fort Myers. The suspect was also killed in the altercation. (Amanda Inscore/news-press.com)
     
  3. Inspector

    Inspector Subscribing Member

    UPDATE:

    Officer Andrew Whitman, 30, was killed after responding to a domestic disturbance at Main and Hendry streets at 2:03 a.m. Whitman was shot in the face at close range, Police Maj. Doug Baker said. Four other officers exchanged gunfire with the suspect, whose name hasn't been released.

    Baker made the announcement, flanked by mayor Jim Humphrey and city manager William Mitchell.

    Four officers have been placed on paid administrative leave, per department policy. A Fort Myers Police investigation of the incident will be sent to the state attorney's office.
     
  4. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Police identify officer killed in early morning shooting

    Originally posted on: Friday, July 18, 2008 by NBC2 News
    Last updated on: 7/18/2008 1:15:28 PM

    [​IMG]

    FORT MYERS: A police officer was shot to death at Main & Hendry streets in downtown Fort Myers early Friday morning.
    The officer killed is identified as Andrew Widman. He has been with the Fort Myers Police since April 2007.
    Major Doug Baker says the officer died while responding to a call about a disturbance in front of the pizza shop on Hendry Street at 2:03 a.m.
    Witnesses say that disturbance was a domestic dispute between a man and a woman, and the officer stepped in to break up the fight.
    Authorities say the man pulled a gun and started shooting.
    Widman was shot at close range in the face. Baker said he never had an opportunity to draw his weapon.
    Other officers at the scene followed the suspect, who has not been identified, and the suspect fired shots at the officers.
    The suspect was shot and killed.
    The officers involved will be placed on paid administrative leave as is standard practice. They have been identified as Alain Gagnon, Wolfgang Daniel, Mike Perry and BJ Ades.
    Baker said in the press conference the suspect had said he was going to go out "Miami style" and take an officer with him.
    Witnesses say they heard two shots as the officer was trying to break up the fight. Then they saw the officer lying on the ground.
    Other witnesses say at least eight shots were fired, but police have not confirmed any of those details.
    No one else was injured.

    THE FALLEN OFFICER
    Andrew Widman was new to the force. He started with the department in April 2007.
    Baker said Widman has a wife, three children, and was "well-liked... dedicated... hard worker."
    Local family members have been told of his death, but the department is still working to contact family members out of the area.
    Baker said taking care of the family is the department's number-one priority.
    "It's very difficult," Baker said, when asked about how other officers were dealing with the news. "This is very tragic and difficult to get by."
    The last time a Fort Myers officer died in the line of duty was in 2002, when Officer Daniel Starks was killed in a traffic accident.

    THE INVESTIGATION
    Officers are interviewing witnesses to the shooting. Those who saw the incident could be seen shuttling back and forth to police headquarters throught the early morning hours.
    The Florida Department of Law Enforcement will take over the investigation since the incident involves a law enforcement agency.

    The following streets/areas are closed due to the investigation:
    • Patio Deleon
    • Broadway & Second
    • Second & Hendry
    • Main & Hendry
    • Main & Broadway
    Lee County deputies have taken over response to calls for assistance while the Fort Myers Police Department deals with the tragedy.


    Vodeo: http://www.wbbh.com/articles/readarticle.asp?articleid=20481&z=3
     
  5. PapaBear

    PapaBear MassCops Member

    RIP Officer Widman. May God give comfort to your family in this, their hour of need. Serve with St Michael and watch over your brethren. Your short tour was performed with grace, dignity and professionalism Thank you!

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Inspector

    Inspector Subscribing Member

    FORT MYERS: Andrew Widman, a police officer with the Fort Myers Police Department, was shot and killed Friday morning. NBC2 spoke with the suspect's girlfriend to hear what she had to say about the shooting.
    Tercotte's uncontrollable tears Friday evening told an unfathomable story - one of devastating loss from a senseless act of violence and one she calls a lose-lose situation for everybody.
    "She has lost the father of her child. She has lost an individual who saved her life," said Tercotte's attorney Steve Leskovich.
    Tercotte calls Officer Andrew Widman a hero. She says Arango would have killed her if he didn't step in.
    "She is more in shock and still in disbelief that somebody lost their life for her," said Leskovich.
    Tercotte, who has a 10-month-old daughter with Arango, says the horrific shooting blindsided her.
    "She has no idea why he did what he did. She never saw the gun, never gave him a gun, never heard of a gun, didn't know he had a gun, and somehow he had it," said Leskovich.
    While the shooting will never make any sense to Tercotte, she and her attorney noted what may have motivated Arango.
    "Abel had the warrant out from Collier County, had pending charges in Lee County, knew that he was going back to prison and felt that he wasn't going," Leskovich said.
    Tercotte says he just snapped. Leskovich says both of them had been drinking at several downtown clubs throughout the night.
    Now, the physically and emotionally bruised 26-year-old is talking with police.
    "She gave a six-hour-long statement. She's going to do whatever she can do to help the police figure out why Abel did what he did," said Leskovich.
    She is also sending her deepest condolences to the Widman family. She broke down talking about the fallen officer, saying she's so sorry and she wouldn't be here if it weren't for his bravery.
    NBC2 NEWS
     
  7. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Community supports family of slain Fla. officer



    By Leslie Williams
    The Naples Daily News

    FORT MYERS, Fla. — After losing one of their own, they just couldn't sit back and wait for others to help.
    Law enforcement agencies across Lee County have united to support the family of one of their own, gunned down early Friday.
    Fort Myers Police Officer Andrew Widman, 30, leaves behind a wife and three small children.
    The plan hatched Saturday by members of Lee County's police, fire and emergency departments reaches beyond the two memorial funds set up for Widman's family. Members of a dozen law enforcement agencies spent Sunday and plan to spend the next two days taking donations at Lee County Wal-Marts and major intersections, with the goal of raising $100,000.
    Funds collected will be placed in the memorial account set up for Widman's family at Fifth Third Bank, Cape Coral Police Detective Robert Wardrop said.
    "I'm gonna get with the bank tomorrow and let them know we're gonna have a lot of change and a lot of small bills," Wardrop said Sunday.
    At the Wal-Mart at Colonial Boulevard and Six Mile Cypress Drive, every brand of citizen had been placing money in the bucket on Sunday, from a man with a stack of 100 $1 bills to a 2-year-old prompted by her mother to drop in a bag full of coins. But officials aren't collecting spare change alone.
    "One lady went to an ATM machine in Wal-Mart and took $500 out of the ATM and dropped it right in the bucket and walked away," Wardrop said. "I can't describe the feeling from the community. It's such immense support."
    He said scores of other people had contributed $100 each, and estimated that in the first four hours, $15,000 had been collected toward the goal.
    If you'd like to contribute directly to one of two memorial funds:
    * The Fort Myers Police Department set up the Andrew Widman Memorial Fund at Fifth Third Bank.
    * The law firm of Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice Purtz set up the Andrew Widman Family Fund at Preferred Community Bank. Donations can be sent to the firm or the bank.

    [​IMG]Wire Service
     

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