As a line of horrified drivers on an interstate highway watched helplessly, a high-speed chase turned deadly as an attack on a sheriff’s deputy unfolded before their eyes.

The incident took place on the busy I-75 highway just 20 minutes south of Ft. Meyers, as a driver roared past traffic at what one motorist estimated was between 100 and 120 miles per hour and swerved onto the left shoulder in his attempt to evade the deputy.

“There was a lot of other lives that he was putting at risk, including mine and my daughter's,” said Nicole Ambrosini, a nurse who was on the road and saw it all. “I saw a car approaching me from behind at a very fast rate.”

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When both the suspect and the deputy pulled off at Exit 123 – Corkscrew Road – the suspect, according to Ambrosini and other witnesses, got out of the car and physically attacked the deputy.

Another witness, Shanta Holditch, told police and local reporters, the suspect pulled the deputy out of his patrol car and threw him to the ground.

“He just kept beating him and beating him, throwing him to the ground and punching him in all different directions.”

It was at that point that one citizen, a Good Samaritan intervened.

Witnesses said they saw another man run to the scene, with a gun drawn, and shout at the suspect to stop, but Ms. Holditch said the suspect, “refused to get off the officer.”

Another witness said he heard three shots and then saw the suspect “fall onto the deputy” who then rolled out from under the dead suspect.

“The guy that protected, shot the bad guy, was a guy that pulled over on the ramp and saw the guy beating the officer.”

All the witnesses agreed they saw one citizen – a good guy with a gun – step up and intervene in a situation that could have ended very differently.

Authorities have not released the identities of the deputy, the suspect or the Good Samaritan, nor disclosed any information about the underlying incident that gave rise to the chase and assault.

 

 

 

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