ZEPHYRHILLS — Deputies have arrested a 33-year-old Dade City man who was involved in a fight that left an off-duty Tampa reserve officer with a bullet wound to the shoulder.
Christopher Wayne Jones faces one count of driving with a suspended license and charges of drug trafficking and possession after methamphetamine, Oxycodone, cocaine and marijuana were found in his car, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said. He was being held in lieu of $109,000 bail.
Jones fled the scene of a minor hit-and-run crash in downtown Zephyrhills on Wednesday and the Tampa officer, Robert Potts, followed him, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Jones pulled over beside a dirt road about two miles away. The two men got out of their cars, argued and began fighting, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Potts, 54, pulled his weapon and as the two men wrestled, it inadvertently discharged and struck Potts in the shoulder, the Sheriff’s Office said. Jones fled on foot and was apprehended nearby.
Potts was airlifted to a hospital and treated for non-life threatening injuries. He has been a reserve officer with Tampa police since 2007 and has no disciplinary actions in his file, police spokesman Steve Hegarty said.
Tampa police are conducting an internal affairs investigation, standard practice when an officer's weapon is fired on or off duty, Hegarty said.
Jones was not charged in connection with the fight because Potts did not identify himself as a law enforcement officer before trying to take him into custody, said Pasco sheriff’s spokeswoman Benecia Holder.
No charges have been filed in connection with the hit-and-run because it remains under investigation, said Zephyrhills police Capt. Reginald Roberts.
On three occasions since 2008, Jones has served a sentence of about a year for Florida drug convictions, according to Department of Corrections records. He was released in August 2016 from his most recent sentence.
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