The five Ormond Beach police officers who fatally shot a former Chicago police officer after she shot her husband were cleared by the state attorney following an investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement into the use-of-force incident.
Police said officers were called to the 800 block of North Beach Street on March 26 after witnesses called 911 to report a domestic disturbance. According to the FDLE use-of-force investigation, Deanna Owsianiak, 55, and her husband David Owsianiak, 56, were arguing when she fatally shot him during a struggle over a weapon.
Deanna Owsianiak was still armed when police arrived and did not obey multiple commands to drop her weapon, investigators said. Five OBPD officers opened fire, fatally shooting the 55-year-old woman. Both the husband and wife were pronounced dead at the scene.
State Attorney R.J. Larizza reviewed the FDLE investigation and said no action would be taken against the officers involved.
The FDLE findings included interviews with officers who responded, video, witnesses accounts and 911 calls.
“This letter is to advise that this office has reviewed all of the investigative reports, officer statements and witness statements provided by your office regarding the ‘police use of force’ involving Sgt. John Borzner, Cpl. Caleb Braun, Inv. Ryan Mihalko, Ofc. Keaton LaBraie and Ofc. Jake Sesemann of the Ormond Beach Police Department that occurred on March 26, 2020,” according to the letter from Larizza to FDLE. “Based on a review of the investigation and the information provided, no further action is warranted by this office.”
Around 3 p.m. on the day of the incident, several people called 911 reporting a woman, later identified as Deanna Owsianiak, was down in the river with a shotgun displaying irrational behavior.
“We were on our dock and two people wandered down to the river. They looked distressed, a woman and a man, they were fighting, the woman took off and ran to the water and the man chased her,” a 911 caller said. “They were wrestling over a gun, I think. They were wrestling over something and somebody pulled out a gun and shot the other one.”
The report offers some information about a timeline leading up to the double fatal shooting.
Prior to the shooting, a neighbor said David Owsianiak asked for help in searching for his wife when she did not return home from a walk, according to the FDLE report.
David Owsianiak located his wife in a wooded lot near 825 North Beach St., according to the neighbor, and she was armed with a firearm and two spare magazines.
The neighbor said David Owsianiak was trying to get his wife to hand over the weapon. Eventually, Deanne Owsianiak walked toward the water and David Owsianiak followed, according to the report. The neighbor described hearing a gunshot and seeing David Owsianiak face down in the water.
David Owsianiak served as a firefighter locally for several years but spent most of his career with the Chicago Fire Department. Deanne Owsianiak had recently retired, according to a neighbor.