TAMARAC, Fla. – The Broward Sheriff's Office on Friday released the identities of a man and a woman who were involved in a domestic violence incident Thursday night that led to a deputy-involved shooting in Tamarac.
The couple was identified as Kimani Pearce, 32, and Merica Green, 31.
Cellphone cameras captured the tense confrontation for deputies after Pearce allegedly shot his girlfriend in the torso. Sheriff Gregory Tony said one of his deputies was forced to fire at the suspect when the man refused to put down his gun.
"There was one police lady in a car saying, 'Drop the gun. Drop the gun.' He refused. He just stood there for 20 minutes while she was upstairs bleeding," witness Wendy Richland said.
Cellphone footage from a neighbor in the Tamarac apartment complex at 5881 NW 57th Court shows the intense scene.
The video shows Pearce with what looks like a gun to his head.
"He was waving a gun around and he was holding it up to his head and saying, 'I can't live anymore. It's not worth living,'" witness Howard Reicher said.
Witnesses said deputies told him to drop the gun, but he then pointed it at deputies, leading to one of the deputies shooting him multiple times.
"He took it upon himself to stand on the landing and stop our deputies from going in there and safeguarding and treat this individual," Tony said. "And only after 20-plus minutes of trying to get this thing to de-escalate, he elected to point his weapon in a hostile manner at our deputies."
"We heard like eight or nine gunshots," one witness said. "It was rapid fire. I saw him get wheeled away into an ambulance."
Authorities said Pearce had shot Green before they arrived.
"My daughter's aunt's boyfriend shot her in her apartment in the next apartment," Roice Walker said.
Gina Carter, a spokeswoman for the agency, said the suspect and the woman were taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Green spoke briefly to Local 10 News reporter Sanela Sabovic Friday at her apartment, saying Pearce is a nice guy and has never been violent before.
"He's not an abusive person," she said.
Green said Pearson hasn't been the same, however, since he lost his mother last year.
"He's a loving, caring, supportive, intelligent person and he simply snapped. I just want him to get the help that he needs," Green said.
Green said she is doing OK and hasn't spoken to her boyfriend since she last saw him Thursday.
"If he was in his right state of mind, he would've never harmed me or anyone," she said.
The victim's family said they don't know why her boyfriend had a gun.
The sheriff called Pearce extremely dangerous and said his deputies "did an outstanding job."
Pearce faces charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and several counts of aggravated assault on an officer.
No deputies were injured in the shooting.
Per BSO policy, the veteran captain who fired his weapon, as well as the other five responding deputies, have been placed on administrative assignment, authorities said.
BSO detectives are investigating the domestic violence incident while the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the deputy-involved shooting.