The Hillsborough State Attorney's Office ruled Tuesday that two sheriff's deputies were justified in shooting a man accused of wrestling a gun away from a deputy and shooting him in the legs Oct. 23.
Deputies Derrick Grace, 29, and Harry Dean Bradley, 48, have been on paid administrative leave since the incident, which is routine for deputies involved in shootings. Both will return to active duty immediately, sheriff's spokesman Lt. Greg Brown said.
"This appeared to be a pretty straightforward case," said Chris Watson, chief of homicide for the state attorney's office.
The major question that had to be answered, Watson said, was which gun fired the bullet found in Deputy Alan "Tony" Anuszewski's leg.
Witnesses said deputies who were trying to stop suspect Tarrinson Walker in connection with a hit-and-run incident had to use their batons to get him out of his car. As the deputies struggled with Walker, also known as Terrence Jones, authorities say he grabbed Anuszewski's pistol and shot the deputy through the thigh, prompting Grace and Bradley to shoot Walker.
Walker, who was shot four times, remains in fair condition at Tampa General Hospital.
Tests confirmed that Anuszewski was shot with his own gun, not by one of the other deputies. He was released from the hospital two days after the shooting.
"The lab results came back exactly the way everybody told us things had happened," Watson said.
Officials at the Sheriff's Office were pleased with the results of the investigation, Brown said Wednesday.
But Walker's mother, Esther, continues to question the Sheriff's Office's handling of the shooting, which she maintains was sparked by excessive force, Watson said.