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Sarasota deputies kill man during traffic stop, passenger still on loose

11:29 AM, Jun 12, 2012   |    comments
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Sarasota, Florida -- A man was killed Monday night after authorities say they tried to run over a Sarasota County Sheriff's deputy during a routine traffic stop.

The sheriff's office says Deputy Adam Shaw pulled the driver over in the area of Washington Court and 29th Street. When Sergeant Tony Sasse arrived as backup, Shaw approached the white Jeep Liberty and told the driver, 23-year-old Rodney Mitchell, to put the SUV in park.

After initially putting the Jeep in park, the deputies say he abruptly said, "No," put the car in drive and accelerated toward Sgt. Sasse.

Afraid for their safety, the deputies shot at the Jeep. The driver lost control about a block away and hit several cars in the parking lot of the Sunoco gas station before coming to a stop.

The driver died at the scene and the passenger in the SUV fled. He has not been found.

Both deputies are on routine paid administrative leave while authorities investigate the incident.

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