Man shot after running away from mental health clinic

OCALA, FL – According to the Ocala Police Department, a 23-year-old man is in critical condition following a shooting involving a police officer on Sunday afternoon. The department revealed that the man’s family had initially attempted to transport him to The Vines Hospital, a mental health clinic in the area.

By the time the officers reached the clinic, in response to the call at 12:21 p.m., the man had already absconded and was displaying erratic behavior, the Ocala police stated. A little after a quarter past noon, the police located the man in the vicinity of the 5500 block of SW 27th Avenue.

The department justified the shooting, stating the man posed a significant, immediate threat, which mandated the use of lethal force. 

Eyewitness Preston Bare recounted witnessing the incident while returning home. He saw a man in a black hoodie being confronted by two officers, one with a gun and the other with a taser.

Bare reported seeing the man pleading with the officers, only to be tasered. The situation escalated when the man charged toward the officer with the gun, armed with pepper spray and a knife. Then, the officer shot him, Bare said.

The man survived the gunshot and has undergone surgery, with additional medical procedures yet to be completed, stated the department. However, the police did not report any injuries to officers.