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JACKSONVILLE, Florida. – The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday identified the man who was fatally shot the previous day by police in Riverside – a man who investigators believe was suspected of involvement in a murder case.
Police and family members who shared a photo of him confirmed it was 29-year-old Tyree O’Neal. The family said he had two children.
An eyewitness, who spoke to News4JAX on condition of anonymity, said she was there on Tuesday when shots rang out.
“The law enforcement officers are shouting, ‘Stand back. Resign. Freeze,” she recalls.
She said she saw the man running through her garden with a gun.
“It looked like an AK or SKS style weapon. It looked like he intended to shoot the officers,” she said.
She said from her angle she could only see the man – later identified as O’Neal – with a gun, but not the officers as she looked through the blinds.
Chief Mike Romano previously said detectives located the man while surveying the area. He said the man got out, tried to get to his vehicle, and when officers tried to take him into custody, O’Neal fled on foot, but was spotted nearby.
“The officers ordered him to stop. He didn’t stop and he actually pulled a gun out from under the hoodie he was wearing,” Romano said. “One of our officers shot the suspect at that time, once. The suspect continued to run.
The witness said she grabbed her children after hearing the gunshot and they all hid in a closet, where she heard more gunshots.
Several doors down, Liz Floyd also heard that first shot.
“And then I constantly heard two more. One after another,” Floyd said.
“I could clearly hear them saying, ‘He’s moving. He’s moving,'” added the anonymous witness.
Investigators said O’Neal ran to the back of the building.
“I could hear him running into the apartment on the ground floor of the building and subsequently emerging at the front,” the witness said.
Police said that’s when O’Neal ran out the front door. At the time, Floyd was looking out his front window.
“And that’s when I saw the guy running sideways across the yard to get to his car,” Floyd said. “As soon as he turned around to the driver’s side to get in, that’s when all the officers came pouring in. Guns pointed. Shouting.”
Chief Romano said the man was again ordered to stop but then walked towards the officers.
Floyd said she ran to the back of her house to take shelter with her 4-month-old child. Then, she said, she heard more gunshots.
“Quick shot. There was no way I could have even counted if I wanted to. It was so quick,” Floyd said.
Moments after the shooting, his Ring doorbell camera recorded the moment officers pulled O’Neal out of the car and began performing CPR. O’Neal died at the scene.
Police said O’Neal was a convicted felon who was wanted for unlawful possession of a firearm. They also said he was a suspect in both a murder case and an attempted murder case.
While not living in the building, one witness we spoke with said the building, which they said was an Airbnb, had been under police surveillance for a long time.
When News4JAX spoke to O’Neal’s sister and cousin, they both said they still want JSO to release the body camera video to see if the video supports the officer’s account of what happened.
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Family, police identify man fatally shot by officers in Riverside
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