Questions remain unanswered about deadly deputy shooting at Target in Osceola County

Two deputies were responsible for opening fire at a Target, killing one man and injuring others

Two men stealing a pizza and several packs of Pokémon cards from a Target led to a deadly deputy shooting Wednesday night, records obtained by News 6 Thursday revealed.

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – It’s been two days since the deputy-involved shooting at a Target store in Osceola County, and the sheriff’s office has released very few details. A lot of questions remain unanswered.

According to records, the shooting — which occurred Wednesday evening in the parking lot of the store — involved deputies who attempted to make contact with a pair of suspected shoplifters.

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Multiple units attempted to make contact with the vehicle the suspects were in, which ultimately led to two deputies opening fire and killing one man, according to Sheriff Marcos Lopez. The arresting affidavit did not say exactly what preceded the gunfire.

The sheriff’s office put out a brief press release late Thursday afternoon that said, “During the apprehension of four suspects, two deputies discharged their agency-issued firearm. One suspect is deceased, two suspects were transported to the hospital, and one suspect was detained on the scene.”

But deputies have not said specifically why deputies were forced to open fire, and the names of any suspects — including the one who died — have not been released.

While News 6 has reached out to the agency about these details, we have yet to receive any response.

So we started digging through daily arrest records; it’s how we uncovered the arrests of Michael Gomez and Joseph Lowe.

The charging affidavit said they stole a pizza and Pokémon cards from the Target and then got into a black Audi. That’s when deputies tried to make contact.

But the report gave little information about what happened next, saying a takedown was attempted and resulted in a deputy-involved shooting.

About the Author:

Lauren Cervantes was born and raised in the Midwest but calls Florida her second home. She joined News 6 in August 2019 as a reporter.