MERRITT ISLAND, Fla April 20 2017- The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating an incident outside the Merritt Square Mall early Tuesday afternoon, in which a Brevard County sheriff's deputy shot and wounded a man.
A construction worker who was on site at the mall was confronted by his boss for erratic driving. Others had observed this same erratic behavior, including mall security, explained Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivy during a news conference.
Sheriff Ivey said the security officer attempted to calm the man without success, and that's when a deputy was called for assistance.
"He was armed with a piece of metal or steel fencing," said Sheriff Ivey. "He became aggressive towards the deputy, swinging the piece of metal, piece of post, at the deputy."
The female deputy fired multiple rounds at the man, according to Sheriff Ivey. Two other deputies joined to render first aid and to secure the area.
Sheriff Ivey said deadly force was deemed necessary by the deputy, because of the man's aggressive actions and the piece of metal he was holding, which essentially was a weapon.
"The piece of fence post, when you see it, is a thick piece of metal that actually had barbs along it. It could have done substantial injury, or even worse, to one of our deputies," said Sheriff Ivey.
Sheriff Ivey said it was unknown what led the man to act aggressively and erratically towards the deputy. As is standard procedure with any officer-involved shooting, the FDLE will conduct an investigation.
Sheriff Ivey did not identify the deputy during Tuesday's news conference. The condition of the man who was shot was not immediately known.
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