WANTED SHOOTING SUSPECT SHOT, WOUNDED AFTER OPENING FIRE ON LAW ENFORCEMENT

Joint Volusia County Sheriff’s Office-DeLand Police News Release:

A suspect wanted on attempted murder and other charges in a recent DeLeon Springs shooting was shot and injured Monday afternoon after he drove head-on at one Volusia County sheriff’s deputy, opened fire on a second deputy and was met with return fire from another deputy and a DeLand police officer.

No law enforcement officers were injured in the incident, which started unfolding shortly after 3 p.m. Monday and ended with 33-year-old Dillon Parker (DOB 10/15/1985) shot in the chest and the leg. Deputies and police immediately rendered first aid to Parker at the scene, and he was later airlifted to Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach, where he was listed in critical condition but expected to survive.

Parker was wanted in a Nov. 10 shooting at 5195 West Ave., DeLeon Springs, where the victim, 33-year-old Daniel Dekmar, was left in critical condition. (That news release is provided below.) In addition to attempted murder, Parker was facing charges of aggravated battery with a firearm and felony battery. He also had an active warrant for bond revocation on a previous charge of fleeing or attempting to elude law enforcement.

The preliminary information gathered about today’s incident indicates that around 3:08 p.m., the Lake County Sheriff’s Office notified VCSO that Parker was headed into Volusia County in a gold sedan. Moments after a deputy spotted the vehicle, it veered toward his patrol vehicle, forcing him to swerve out of the way. As Parker continued south down U.S. 17, deputies were able to stop-stick his car, forcing it to slow down and roll off into a ditch. That’s when Parker started shooting at another responding deputy, who radioed that he was taking fire. A fellow deputy moved in and fired back at Parker. Then a DeLand police officer (who was driving through the area on his way to work) stopped and also fired multiple shots at Parker with his rifle.

Parker threw away a firearm when those law enforcement officers approached him to render aid after the shooting.

“They’re going home tonight to their families; that’s the most important thing,” Sheriff Chitwood said of the deputies and police officer involved. “…These guys did what they had to do today. They certainly didn’t come to work to shoot somebody. But the person that they were trying to take down and arrest clearly wanted to make sure that they didn’t go home to their families.”

“I’m very proud of his effort and the effort of these Volusia County deputy sheriffs,” DeLand Police Chief Jason Umberger said. “Every day, we have law enforcement officers put their lives on the line to take into custody dangerous felons like this. And you can see today how violent he was. He was not going to surrender. He was going to try to take out police and kill police officers. So thank God their training kicked in and they were able to take him into custody.”

The deputies and officer are being placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard following a deputy/officer-involved shooting. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement responded to the scene to conduct an investigation.