Saturday, January 18, 2020

Marion County Sheriff William Woods: ‘Don’t even dare question’ deputies in fatal shooting

"BILLY" WOODS, Sheriff of Marion County says no one dare to question deputies over a death in "my county," not even FBI agents.  

Sheriff WOODS typifies the arrogant elected officials in ethically-challenged offices  that resemble dictatorships, in places where journalists are afraid to do their jobs, where monopoly Chain Gang Journalism news organizations deprive the people of information about their governments.

Sheriff "BILLY" WOODS sounds like former Anderson County, Tennessee Sheriff DENNIS O. TROTTER, whom our Appalachian Observer newspaper investigated 1981-83.  TROTTER onee told me that  said I was "the most dangerous reporter I ever met in my entire life."  TROTTER was indicted, arrested, convicted and incarcerated in federal prisons from 1984-1988.

We renounce the harsh threatening words of Marion County Sheriff "BILLY" WOODS. We renounce his works and pomps, just as we renounce the corruption of St. Johns County Sheriff DAVID SHOAR, who covered up the murders of Michelle O'Connell and Eli Washtock. On September 2, 2010, Michelle O'Connell was murdered ih the home of Deputy JEREMY BANKS. On January 31, 2019, Eli/Ellie Washcock, investigating the murder of Ms. O'Connell, was killed in his home in World Golf Village.

Share their shame.  Don't tolerate unAmerican activities, or those who do,

Ask questions, demand answers and expect democracy.  In 20 years as a St. Johns County resident, and in fifteen years as an active outspoken zealous advocate for change in our local  governments, the lesson is clear: SILENCE = DEATH.

From the Ocala Star Banner:

Woods: ‘Don’t even dare question’ deputies in fatal shooting

By Austin L. Miller
Posted Jan 17, 2020 at 4:51 PM
The dead man’s brother asks why they didn’t use their Taser to stop the knife attack.

Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods had a forceful message for lawmakers — state or federal — who want to release prisoners early and for anyone who wants to second-guess law enforcement officials who use deadly force: Don’t even dare do it.

A defiant Woods said those writing bills should think twice before introducing laws that may endanger men and women protecting their communities.

“We cannot tie their hands,” Woods said Friday.

Addressing the media at the Sheriff’s Office, Woods issued his message to lawmakers in response to a deputy-involved shooting late Tuesday night at the Circle K gas station. Sheriff’s officials said the man got out of his vehicle and rushed toward deputies with a large knife. The man — identified by the Sheriff’s Office on Friday as 51-year-old Eliezer Perez — was shot and killed.

The deputies were not injured. They are on administrative leave, which is standard, as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigates the shooting.

Woods insisted that no one could question the deputies who were defending themselves while a man charged at them with a knife.

“To all you out there, don’t even dare question them,” he said. “Don’t even dare do it. Not in my county.”

Perez’s brother, George Perez, did question the fatal shooting.

“The policy of the MCSO is to shoot first and ask questions later,” he said in a telephone interview.

Perez’s brother wanted to know if the deputies were not trained to use their Tasers. With a Taser, George Perez said, they could have neutralized the threat. Or, he said, they could have shot him in the leg.

He believes Woods is trying to protect his deputies because the Sheriff’s Office had two fatal shootings in a month.

At a preceding press conference at the Sheriff’s Office, Sgt. Paul Bloom, the agency’s public information officer, said the deputies had finished pumping gas and were talking when the incident happened.

Calling it an unprovoked attack that’s unacceptable, Woods said this is the evil that law enforcement officials encounter every day and he’s thankful his deputies were not injured.

Woods did not release the deputies’ names.

The Sheriff’s Office released a criminal history of Perez indicating criminal convictions for aggravated assault on a firefighter, burglary and child abuse. Woods said Perez attacked firefighters with a knife in Miami.

He said that so far they don’t have any motive as to why Perez wanted to harm the deputies. Woods said they had no prior contact with Perez. The sheriff called the attack “senseless.”

“My deputies will defend themselves,” he said.

Woods said law enforcement officials can’t predict assaults such as the one on Tuesday, but when they do occur, the deputies have the training to protect themselves.

As the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigation is ongoing, Woods said he cannot talk too much about the situation.

Asked about the attack on firefighters in Miami, George Perez said firefighters don’t have weapons — or Tasers — and in that case his brother survived.

The other fatal deputy-involved shooting occurred on Dec. 25 in Palm Cay. Deputies shot and killed Lori Jean Jean Canada, 59, who came out of her residence in the 11400 block of Southwest 79th Terrace and pointed a gun at them.

Deputies said they went to the community, located off State Road 200, due to a suicide threat.

The names of those deputies also have not been released. A sheriff’s official said they are back at work.

— Contact Austin L. Miller at 867-4118, austin.miller@starba

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