Sunday, June 17, 2018
News Roundup

Autopsy report indicates movie theater shooting victim raised his hand before gun was fired

The bullet fired into the chest of the man who died inside a Wesley Chapel movie theater last month also grazed his right hand, indicating the victim might have raised it at the moment he was shot, according to the autopsy report released Wednesday.

Chad Oulson was shot inside the Grove Cobb 16 theater Jan. 13 in what authorities described as an argument over texting. Curtis Reeves Jr., a 71-year-old retired Tampa police captain, became agitated about the texting, authorities say, and shot Oulson as the argument escalated. Reeves is charged with second-degree murder.

"The paths of the two gunshot wounds correspond when the right hand/wrist is held in front of the thorax and likely represent the path of a single bullet," noted chief medical examiner Jon Thogmartin, whose staff examined the body of Oulson, 43. The report also mentions unburned powder and debris found on the back of Oulson's right hand.

The autopsy report appears to corroborate an enhanced surveillance video taken from inside auditorium 10, where the shooting took place. In the video, Reeves leans forward in his seat, then Oulson's hand extends across the chair, just barely entering the video clip, and dumps something in Reeves' lap. (Witnesses say they saw Oulson throw popcorn at Reeves.) Without pause, Reeves reaches his right hand forward and fires, the muzzle flash bursting outside the camera's frame.

Witnesses in the dimly lit theater said they heard words exchanged but did not see any physical contact between the two men. But Reeves told sheriff's detectives shortly after the shooting that something struck him in the face, knocking his glasses crooked. His legal team has said he acted in self defense.

Reeves' attorney, Richard Escobar, declined to comment on the report. However, he told reporters after a judge denied bail on Friday that the facts would ultimately exonerate his client and urged reporters to seek experts' opinion on the video.

"Don't rush to judgment," Escobar said last week.

Prosecutors did not return calls for comment.

The autopsy report also says Oulson was shot in the left side of his chest, with the bullet perforating the fourth left rib and piercing his heart. Examiners removed a yellow metal bullet jacket from the base of his heart and a lead fragment from his right lung.

Comments
Chicago soldier killed in Korea finally being laid to rest

Chicago soldier killed in Korea finally being laid to rest

CHICAGO — Not long after her father went missing during the Korean War, Carol Elkin spotted then-Gen. Dwight Eisenhower in downtown Chicago and did what any kid might do when coming face to face with the nation’s most famous soldier: She ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
1 dead, 20 injured in New Jersey arts festival shooting

1 dead, 20 injured in New Jersey arts festival shooting

TRENTON, N.J — Shooting broke out at an all-night art festival in Trenton, New Jersey, early Sunday, sending people stampeding from the scene and leaving one suspect dead and 20 people injured, a local prosecutor said. Many of the 20 injured were tre...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays lose again to Yankees, this time 4-1

Rays lose again to Yankees, this time 4-1

NEW YORK — Kevin Cash was not going to go all Lou Piniella on his Rays, raging and ripping and roaring over their latest mess, a 4-1 Saturday loss to the Yankees that didn't feel that close.Which is too bad because Piniella, the volcanic former...
Published: 06/16/18

Lottery resultsNumbers drawn after 9 p.m. are no longer available by our deadlines. For results, please go to tampabay.com/lottery.Pick 2, 3, 4, 5Sun., June 17, midday:xx xxx xxxxe_SRitxxxxxSun., June 17, evening:xx xxx xxxxe_SRitxxxxxFantasy 5Sunday...
Published: 06/16/18
Hurricane Maria family resettles in Riverview, only to be left homeless by lightning strike

Hurricane Maria family resettles in Riverview, only to be left homeless by lightning strike

RIVERVIEW — It was the most routine of errands, shopping for a cooler and some shorts. Joel Jaca and Arelys Gomez, both 40, had turned an important corner, miles away from hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico. They had finally gotten out of their re...
Published: 06/16/18
Peering into the crystal baseball to see what Rays could look like in 2019

Peering into the crystal baseball to see what Rays could look like in 2019

The Rays are still talking, as they should, about playing for something this season. The reality is that almost every move they've made, going back to the end of last season, and in some cases further, has been about 2019 and beyond.Clearing out vete...
Published: 06/16/18

Published: 06/16/18
Mazzaro’s Italian Market closed after Friday night warehouse fire

Mazzaro’s Italian Market closed after Friday night warehouse fire

ST. PETERSBURG — Mazzaro’s Italian Market will be closed throughout the weekend after a warehouse fire broke out Friday.A St. Petersburg Police officer noticed smoke coming from the market at 22nd Ave. N around midnight Friday, said St. Petersburg F...
Published: 06/16/18
Catholic diocese celebrates 50 years in Tampa Bay and forges plan for the future

Catholic diocese celebrates 50 years in Tampa Bay and forges plan for the future

ST. PETERSBURG — At his installation as spiritual leader of Tampa Bay’s Catholics, Bishop Gregory Parkes promised to take time to get to know his people, listen to what they had to say and work to discern a plan for the future.On Sunday, 17 months la...
Published: 06/16/18
A fentanyl death. A crackdown on opioid dealers. Will it help?

A fentanyl death. A crackdown on opioid dealers. Will it help?

TAMPA — Loueita Hargens had known for years how her son Bradley Dykes would die. She had seen him cycle through drugs of choice, had lost track of the number of times he’d wound up in the hospital or prison.A recovering alcoholic herself, she cut him...
Published: 06/16/18