HUDSON — A few months ago, Brian Naab swore he would quit drinking.
His friend Arpad Kovacs said Naab recognized that his addiction had become dangerous. "He knew something bad could come out of this," Kovacs said.
Naab, 49, managed to stay sober for only a month. Kovacs said his friend was drunk on Christmas evening when he began shooting his shotgun in the front yard of his home at 6921 Southwind Drive in the Sea Pines subdivision of Hudson.
Neighbors called the Pasco County Sheriff's Office about 6 p.m. Naab and his girlfriend struggled for the shotgun in the yard, and Naab dropped it when deputies ordered him to, said sheriff's spokesman Kevin Doll. But after relinquishing the shotgun, authorities said, Naab grabbed a pistol from his waistband and pointed it at Cpl. Jose Valenzuela, 42. Naab refused to drop the gun, and Valenzuela shot him several times, killing him, Doll said.
Kovacs, 77, said Naab was on disability because of back and arm injuries suffered from three motorcycle accidents. Naab was arrested in Pasco in 2010 on a charge of domestic battery, but the charge was later dropped, court records show. He had no other arrests in Florida.
Doll said no one else was injured in the shooting Sunday. He did not release the name of Naab's girlfriend.
Valenzuela is on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation, which is standard procedure when a deputy fires a weapon, Doll said.
Times staff writer Marissa Lang contributed to this story. Erin Sullivan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 869-6229.