regarding the incident which occurred on Wednesday, September 22, 2004,
which unfortunately resulted in an officer involved shooting and comment on
the rumors that have become rampant throughout the county.
As several of our officers were involved in this incident I made the
immediate decision to contact the Florida Department of Law Enforcement
(FDLE). I felt that it was imperative to have this incident investigated
by an independent agency that remains independent from this department and
has the resources available to adequately investigate.
This incident is very complex and has been diligently pursued by FDLE.
Statements have been taken from all the officers involved as well as
witnesses on the scene and others who have been able to provide pertinent
To reiterate, this pursuit became a very dangerous situation for not only
the officers but the public as well. I would like to take this opportunity
to address some of the rumors that have surfaced. There was no child in the
vehicle; the suspect driver was the only occupant. Remarks such as ramming
the car, - use of a vehicle in such a manner is considered a deadly
weapon; they already shot her tires out, etc. Some of these are rumors and
some are fact, however, many people whether in Hendry County or any other
county for that matter, have only been given the general facts of the case,
to reveal any more information would compromise the integrity of the
investigation and to remain fair, to not only to those involved, but the
suspect and the citizens of this county, we are restricted to the amount of
information that can be released, as much as I would like to share all of
the facts of the case, BY LAW I am prohibited from doing so at this time.
I have complete confidence in knowing that the FDLE will evaluate the facts
as they have found them and present any and all findings to this agency and
the State Attorneys Office. I will then look forward to answering all of
your questions regarding this matter.
As Sheriff, my concern is not only for deputies and administrative staff
but the citizens of whom I serve in this county. Based on the findings of
the investigation I will take any administrative actions that may be deemed
I want to thank the citizens who have remained nonjudgmental during this
time and have continued to be supportive and shared that view with others.
I respectfully request that we all remain patient until the final outcome
of this investigation and remain unbiased pending the completion of the
investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
-Sheriff Steve Worley, Hendry County