A state report criticizing an Orlando police shooting last year may force the department to change its policy on officers investigating crimes involving family members, reports the city’s Sentinel. Agencies across Central Florida already follow a similar rule, but Orlando policy allowed a supervisor to hunt down a man she suspected of stealing her husband’s credit cards, records show. The shooting happened when Sgt. Rhonda Huckelbery and 11 other officers confronted three men in a mall parking lot last Nov. 21.
The officers’ eyewitness accounts differed dramatically from what surveillance video shows leading up to the shooting, Florida Department of Law Enforcement records show. Officers claimed the driver, Rogelio Cortes, tried to ram unmarked cars that tried to block him. But the video shows an unmarked police car ram his vehicle from behind and push it into other officers’ vehicle, which prompted the shooting. Two officers fired a total of nine shots, striking Cortes four times. He survived. Prosecutors did not file charges against the officers, and the shooting is being reviewed by the department’s internal affairs division, which will determine if the officers violated any policies or procedures.