Pasco County deputies shot and killed a man who allegedly fired gunshots at them from inside a New Port Richey home.
The man, identified as 43-year-old Patrick Gerome Tillery, was wanted on attempted arson charges after deputies say he tried to set a used car dealership in Hudson on fire.
During a press conference Thursday morning, Sheriff Chris Nocco explained how it happened.
Nocco said Tillery was at the Rock Bottom Auto Sales dealership Wednesday, where he got into a dispute with the owner over purchasing a vehicle. Nocco said he threatened the owner before he left.
Later that night, officials launched two arson investigations at the same dealership and were able to pin Tillery as their suspect through surveillance footage.
At some point that night, Nocco says Tillery went home and told his wife the “Pasco Sheriff’s Office [would be] coming for him.”
Deputies arrived to the couple’s home on Yucca Drive in New Port Richey at 1:15 a.m., at which time Tillery’s wife said he wasn’t home. She then invited them inside but asked them to wait until she grabbed the dog.
According to Nocco, she then picked up the dog and led the deputies to a room where Tillery was armed and waiting to ambush them. He fired at least two or three rounds.
“Thank God they did not hit our deputies,” Sheriff Nocco said in reference to the shots.
The unharmed deputies returned fire, shooting and killing Tillery.
FOX 13 has learned there were at least two to three children inside the home at the time of the incident. Officials have not said where they were when the shots were fired, but the children have since been taken into protective custody.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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