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Ormond Beach Observer Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013 5 years ago

Volusia deputies shoot and kill suicidal man near Ormond

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The Bunnell man had sent suicidal text messages to his ex-girlfriend and approached Volusia County Sheriff's Deputies in "an aggressive manner."

BY MATT MENCARINI | STAFF WRITER

Volusia County Sheriff's Deputies shot and killed a man near Ormond Beach.

Kenneth Morrow, 52, of Bunnell, had sent suicidal text messages to his ex-girlfriend Jan. 2, and the sheriff's office tracked his cell phone to Highbridge Road near Ormond Beach, just west of the Halifax River.

According to the sheriff's office, a deputy located Morrow just west of the bridge, parked on his motorcycle, holding a gun. The deputy said Morrow told him to stay away.

Morrow continued to send suicidal text messages, including some telling law enforcement to stay back, according to reports, and he pointed the gun at himself several times.

Deputies attempted to talk to Morrow by calling his cell phone and sending text messages. He initially ignored the attempts, but then responded with suicidal messages.

The sheriff’s office said Morrow began shooting at an unknown target at one point, and then, at 6:15 p.m., “advanced on deputies in an aggressive manner while brandishing his weapon and refusing to heed (deputies') warnings to stop.”

Deputies fired at Morrow, according to the sheriff's office, in an attempt to protect themselves.

He was pronounced dead at 6:25 p.m.

The two deputies involved in the shooting, Christopher Jones, 38, and Joel Hernandez, 34, have each been with the sheriff's office for close to 10 years. They have also been placed on paid administrative leave and, according to standard procedure, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement has been called to investigate.

This article was updated 10:33 a.m., Jan. 3.

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