Two children who escaped from a children’s home broke into a house, stole firearms and opened fire on responding police officers in Volusia County, Florida, Tuesday night, police officer’s body-worn camera video shows.
Nicole Jackson, 14, aimed a shotgun at officers and was shot and wounded while Travis O’Brien, 12, carried an AK-47 and eventually surrendered to officials, the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department announced Wednesday. The children ran away from the Florida United Methodist Children’s Home before breaking into an empty house where the homeowners told officials they had multiple firearms and a large amount of ammunition.
“Female has a shotgun in her hand, standby,” one officer said, video released Thursday shows. “Put the gun down now!” an officer told Jackson, “they’re shooting at me.”
The officer told the other officials about Jackson and O’Brien’s location before aiming his firearm at the house and saying, “don’t make me do this.” The officers repeatedly tried to de-escalate the situation and held out on firing at the children, video shows.
Jackson and O’Brien fired at officials from inside the home for nearly 40 minutes before Jackson exited the home, fired at officers and was shot, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department. Deputies provided aid to Jackson who was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Jackson was reported in stable condition after initial surgery and O’Brien was taken to a hospital because he’s a diabetic and left the children’s home without medication, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department.
Jackson was “still stable at last check” and was “conscious and talking” as of Thursday night, Volusia County Sheriff’s Department spokesperson Andrew Gant told the Daily Caller News Foundation Friday. Jackson remained in the hospital and O’Brien is in custody of the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice.
“Deputies did everything they could tonight to de-escalate, and they almost lost their lives to a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old,” Volusia County Sheriff Chitwood said Wednesday. “If it wasn’t for their training and their supervision… Somebody would have ended up dead.”
“I don’t know where we get the men and women who respond to these incidents, who do what they do, and do it with bravery, do it with courage, and do it while trying to protect the sanctity of human life,” Chitwood added. “But they took rounds – multiple, multiple rounds – until they were left with no other choice but to return fire.”
An investigation into the incident is ongoing and Jackson and O’Brien face pending charges, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department.
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