The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office arrested one of its own Friday in connection with the December shooting of a suspect during a traffic stop. Deputy Timothy Virden was arrested on attempted manslaughter charges after shooting Dylan Tompkins-Holmes twice.
The shooting occurred in the early morning hours of Dec. 30 near Johns Pass. Virden stopped Tompkins-Holmes’ girlfriend and was investigating a possible DUI when he, as a passenger, began disrupting the proceedings. Tompkins-Holmes reportedly told his girlfriend not to cooperate with Virden.
Virden asked Tompkins-Holmes several times to stop his disruptions, then arrested him after he persisted. Virden put Tompkins-Holmes in the back of his Sheriff’s SUV cruiser, but the complained that his pants fell down.
Virden reportedly let him leave the vehicle while handcuffed to adjust his pants. Tompkins-Holmes reached for Virden’s gun, reports state, and a struggle for the weapon ensued. Virden secured the gun, but fearing for his life fired the weapon twice, reports state. Bullets hit Tompkins-Virden once in the wrist and in the abdomen.
Initial reports claimed Virden shot in self-defense, although the suspect apparently was in handcuffs at the time of the shooting.
Check back with SaintPetersblog for more information on this developing story.