In the early hours of Sunday, March 19, 2023, a potential tragedy was averted at Mons Venus in Tampa, thanks to the quick action of a security guard. Michael Rudman, 44, arrived at the venue in a silver pickup truck.
Donning a red and black devil mask and displaying the words “kill” and “dark one” on his arms, he approached the entrance armed with a firearm and a flashlight.
As Rudman approached, a security guard at the venue spotted the weapon. He managed to disarm the suspect, knocking the gun out of his hand. During the confrontation, a single round from Rudman’s firearm struck the venue’s front door, but no one inside was injured.
One of the three security guards involved sustained minor injuries during the altercation with Rudman.
Tampa Police officers arrived on the scene, finding additional ammunition, knives, and firearm accessories in Rudman’s truck. They also discovered two fully loaded magazines in his pocket.
Rudman now faces charges including Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Battery, Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon, and Purchasing, Possessing, or Receiving a Firearm While Under a Risk Protection Order (RPO). The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office had served Rudman with an RPO the previous year.
The motive behind Rudman’s actions remains unknown and is currently under investigation. Detectives have learned that he visited the establishment the night before the incident.
Interim Chief Lee Bercaw praised the security guards’ heroic actions, stating that their efforts likely saved dozens of lives. He expressed gratitude that officers were able to apprehend Rudman before he could execute his plans. The investigation into the incident continues in order to gain a clearer understanding of the events leading up to it.
Rudman is presently being held at the Falkenburg Road Jail without bond.