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A former Marine who took methamphetamine and described himself as a “survivor” allegedly started a riot in central Florida Sunday morning that killed four family members and injured an 11-year-old girl, said. Polk County Sheriff. Grady Judd. .
Suspected shooter Bryan Riley, 33, locked him up in the victims’ home and faced a shootout with police before surrendering.
Judd said that Riley initially returned to Lakeland, Florida, around 7:30 p.m. Saturday night and allegedly told one of the possible victims, “I’m here to talk to Amber, you see, God sent me here because he’s about to commit suicide.”
The man and another person in the home told Riley to leave, then called 911, who searched the area for him but could not find him.
Riley returned to his home in Brandon, Florida, about 30 minutes away and had a brief non-violent argument with his girlfriend, Judd said.
About nine hours later, Riley returned to the victims’ Lakeland home. A local MP heard “two automatic shots” around 4.30 am.
When the officer returned home, he noticed a burning truck in the front yard and a trail of light sticks leading from the street to the home, raising concerns from police that the property was a trap. The first officer on the scene saw the suspect outside, also in disguise.
“The suspect runs into the house, then there’s another gunshot and you can hear a woman crying and a baby,” Sheriff Grady said Saturday.
Later, the police tried to enter the house through the front door, but it was locked. They then walked around the house to the back door and had a shootout with Riley, where they hit him at least once. Air support arrived shortly after, and he saw Riley leave the house with his hands in the air, according to Judd.
“On the way to the hospital and to the hospital, he made statements as if he had taken methamphetamine,” Judd said Saturday. “He also said that he was a survivor and even made statements like, ‘Do you know why I did this?’
After the arrest of the suspect
Officers contacted an 11-year-old girl who had been shot seven times. She was rushed to Tampa General Hospital and she is expected to survive.
Police entered the home and found three dead victims: Judge Gleason, 40, a 33-year-old woman, and a three-month-old baby. A 62-year-old woman, allegedly the boy’s grandmother, was also found dead in the apartment next door.
Riley served four years in the Marine Corps and was stationed in Iraq in 2008 and Afghanistan in 2009 and 2010, Judd said. During this time, he was considered a sniper.
His girlfriend told detectives that Riley was working as a security guard at an Orlando church last Sunday and that he was returning home believing he could speak directly to God.
She said he became increasingly unpredictable as the week progressed, he was unable to sleep and indiscriminately purchased supplies for victims of Hurricane Ida, such as $ 1,000 worth of cigars.
“We are not dealing with a traditional criminal here. But we are dealing with someone who, at least last week, had obvious mental health problems, PTSD, ”Judd said.
When Riley was rushed to the emergency room, he allegedly stood up and attempted to snatch a gun from a Lakeland police officer. He was then sedated and must be treated and released from the hospital. He will then be notified and the exact charges are pending.
“He told one of our detectives, ‘You begged for his life and I killed you anyway,'” Judd said. “He is bad in the flesh. He is a rabid animal.”