Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pinellas deputy and St. Petersburg officer in shootings on 15th Avenue S

ST. PETERSBURG — Wednesday started with gunfire on one end of 15th Avenue S and ended with gunfire on the other end.

Both shootings involved law enforcement officers.

In the first shooting, which occurred just after 8 a.m., a woman was accidentally shot by a Pinellas sheriff's deputy at 15th Avenue S and 36th Street S. Sheriff's officials said the shooting occurred as their narcotics detectives conducted a drug raid within the city limits.

Later that day, a St. Petersburg police officer chasing a suspect was dragged up to 200 yards by a car. The officer managed to draw his weapon and fire it inside the speeding auto.

Minutes later, officers found the injured policeman lying in the middle of the street.

Two men with gunshot wounds were found near the car, which was parked a few blocks away. A female driver escaped, and police were still searching for her late Wednesday.

No one wounded in Wednesday's incidents — neither the officer who was dragged nor the three people hit by police gunfire — suffered life-threatening injuries.

• • •

Early Wednesday, Pinellas narcotics detectives came to the city armed with two search warrants.

At 7:40 a.m., they raided a home at 3611 2nd Avenue S, where they arrested Lewis Pratt, 34, on drug charges. Sheriff's officials said they seized marijuana, crack cocaine and at least one firearm.

The same investigation led deputies to Childs Park at 8:05 a.m. Deputies said they broke down the door at 3655 1/2 15th Avenue S and charged inside. Leading the way was a detective with a .45-caliber Glock pistol.

But the pistol accidentally fired, sheriff's officials said, striking 45-year-old Brenda McKay in the right inner thigh as she lay on a couch in the living room.

A medic treated her and she was taken to Bayfront Medical Center. She was not arrested.

The agency won't release the detective's name because he works undercover. He was placed on paid leave while an internal investigation is ongoing.

No one was arrested during the second raid.

• • •

About six hours later, St. Petersburg officers were sent to Bartlett Park to investigate a battery complaint.

A woman said a male acquaintance choked and hit her. Officer Robert Lord found the suspect, Gregory D. Brinson, near the 700 block of 15th Avenue S and confronted him.

Brinson ran into a back yard. Lord chased him and the two brawled, police said. The officer used his Taser on Brinson, who managed to escape back to the street, police said, and dove into a waiting car, a maroon 1994 Oldsmobile Cutlass. A woman was driving. Adam K. Burns sat in the rear passenger seat.

The officer wasn't far behind Brinson when he got into the car, which by this point was moving.

One neighbor told police it appeared that Brinson dragged the officer toward the car. Police said Lord used pepper spray on Brinson, but to no effect.

Police don't know whether the officer held onto the Oldsmobile or was dragged alongside the fleeing vehicle. He was dragged all the way to Seventh Street S.

"I could see the officer's legs dragging out the back door," said resident Lillian Harris, 76.

The officer somehow managed to fire his .40-caliber Glock several times, police said, hitting Burns and Brinson in the feet.

Lord's fellow officers found him lying in the street, conscious. Shell casings and a shoe lay on the road.

Minutes later, the two bleeding men were found near the vehicle at an apartment complex at 430 13th Avenue S.

Brinson, 19, was arrested on a charge of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer. Burns, 29, was charged as an accessory to attempted murder of a law enforcement officer. Both underwent surgery late Wednesday.

The injured officer, Lord, 30, was released from a hospital late Wednesday. He is now on paid leave while the department investigates the shooting.

Pinellas deputy and St. Petersburg officer in shootings on 15th Avenue S 03/11/09 [Last modified: Thursday, March 12, 2009 9:39am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Trigaux: How Moffitt Cancer's M2Gen startup won $75 million from Hearst


    TAMPA — A Moffitt Cancer Center spin-off that's building a massive genetic data base of individual patient cancer information just caught the attention of a deep-pocketed health care investor.

    Richard P. Malloch is the president of Hearst Business Media, which is announcing a $75 million investment in M2Gen, the for-profit cancer informatics unit spun off by Tampa's Moffitt Cancer Center. Malloch's job is to find innovative investments for the Hearst family fortune. A substantial amount has been invested in health care, financial and the transportation and logistics industries.
  2. A boat lays on its side off the shore of Sainte-Anne on the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe, early Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017, after the passing of Hurricane Maria. [Dominique Chomereau-Lamotte | Associated Press]
  3. 7.1 magnitude quake kills at least 149, collapses buildings in Mexico


    MEXICO CITY — A magnitude 7.1 earthquake stunned central Mexico on Tuesday, killing at least 149 people as buildings collapsed in plumes of dust. Thousands fled into the streets in panic, and many stayed to help rescue those trapped.

    A woman is lifted on a stretcher from of a building that collapsed during an earthquake in Mexico City, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017. [Rebecca Blackwell | Associated Press]
  4. FHP seeks semitrailer truck driver that left fiery wreck on I-75


    TAMPA — The Florida Highway Patrol is looking for the driver of a semitrailer truck that sped off from an Interstate 75 crash that left another car burning on Tuesday afternoon.

    Troopers were looking for the driver of a semitrailer truck that sped off from an accident scene on Interstate 75 in Tampa on Tuesday afternoon that caused a car to catch fire. [Courtesy of Florida Highway Patrol]
  5. Joe Maddon gets warm reception in return to the Trop

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The night was arranged to honor former Rays manager Joe Maddon in his first visit back to the Trop, and the standing ovation from the bipartisan crowd and scoreboard video tribute seemed proper acknowledgments of his hefty role in the Rays' success during his nine-year stint.

    Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon (70) talks with reporters during a press conference before the start of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.