PALM HARBOR, Fla. — The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office is investigating a deputy-involved shooting that left a woman seriously injured Monday afternoon.
- Incident started with report of vandalism at apartment complex
- Deputy witnessed suspect fire weapon at neighbor, fired back
- Shots from deputy's weapon injured woman inside apartment
According to officials, Pinellas Deputy Joseph Wodraska first responded Monday morning to the apartment where the shooting later took place in response to a call about vandalism. He spoke to the complainant, Gia Tomossone, 27, who reported that someone had broken out the windows of her car.
Wodraska reportedly then spoke to neighbors about the incident and if they'd seen or heard anything. One of the neighbors he spoke to was Joshua D'Anastasio, 27, who lived in a second floor apartment next door to Tomossone. At that time D'Anastasio said he didn't know anything about the vandalism.
Wodraska reported that he then left the apartment complex, telling Tomossone to contact the Sheriff's Office if she received any information about who might have damaged her car. He was, however, called back to the apartment a few hours later after Tomossone and her boyfriend, Kevin King, 33, reported seeing D'Anastasio "acting suspiciously and hiding a blunt object in the dumpster near their apartment," according to the Sheriff's Office.
While Wodraska was speaking to Tomossone on his return visit, he reported that D'Anastasio came out onto his balcony above where they were speaking and starting shouting at him. At the same time, King came out onto his balcony and started exchanging threats with D'Anastasio.
At that time, according to Wodraska, D'Anastasio told King he "had something for him," went back into his apartment, then came out and pointed at King what looked to the deputy like a gun.
Wodraska told detectives he then saw a muzzle flash and heard the weapon go off. He said he feared for King's safety as well as Tomossone's and his own in that moment and he fired his weapon at D'Anastasio.
Wodraska's shots reportedly missed D'Anastasio but went into his apartment through a glass sliding door. As Wodraska and other deputies challenged D'Anastasio, his girlfiend, Gwen Stubbs, 42, emerged onto balcony bleeding.
Deputies then took D'Anastasio into custody and rendered medical aid to Stubbs. She was transported to an area hospital for treatement of a gunshot wound to her left arm.
Deputies also recovered the weapon D'Anastasio used to fire at King. At that time they determined it was a flare gun.
Detectives say there were multiple witnesses to the incident and the exchange of fire, including a Sheriff's Office forensic science specialist called to the scene in regards to the original blunt object D'Anastasio was reportedly seen hiding.
D'Anastasio was charged with one count of aggravated battery with a firearm. Wodraska was placed on administrative leave.