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Witnesses say racial slur could have sparked shooting at Sanford apartments

Corey Rose, 30, charged with attempted first degree murder

SANFORD, Fla. – Witnesses say a shooting at a Sanford apartment complex that led to one man being arrested and the other critically injured, could have started from a racial comment.

Police said Corey Michael Rose, 30, was in an altercation with Brandon Long at the  Cedar Creek Apartments around 5 p.m. Monday.

Witnesses said Long, who is African-American, according to police reports, called Rose, who is white, a racial slur before hitting Rose in the face with his .40 caliber Glock.

"He came from behind the guy and pistol-whipped him and the man was bloody," said witness Browdy Smith.

Police said Long pointed the gun at Rose. Rose pulled out a gun from his pants and the two hid behind cars. Rose then sought out Long and shot him multiple times, according to the police report.

Long was airlifted to Orlando Regional Medical Center with multiple gunshot wounds.

Rose has been charged with attempted first degree murder, criminal attempt to solicit conspire and carrying a concealed weapon.

The altercation comes on the heels of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Sanford by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman. Martin was unarmed when Zimmerman shot Martin, claiming he was attacked and it was in self-defense.

Witnesses said from what they saw, Rose acting in self-defense.

"I hate to see him go to jail, because that was self defense," Smith said.

But Sanford Police Sgt. Dave Morgenstern said the chain of events doesn't exactly point to a self-defense claim.

"It's not really self defense whenever you go chase the person down who's hiding behind a car, you go around the car and fire more shots at the person, that's not self defense," Morgenstern said.

It's not clear what Long's condition is. Rose was arrested and charged with attempted first degree murder, criminal attempt to solicit conspire and carrying a concealed weapon.

Watch Local 6 for more on this story.