FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A car repossession took a tragic turn when, police said, a tow truck driver shot and killed the vehicle’s owner in a Fort Lauderdale neighborhood.
Fort Lauderdale Police units responded to the scene of the shooting along the 100 block of Carolina Avenue in the Melrose Park neighborhood, Wednesday morning.
According to investigators, the tow truck driver came to the neighborhood to repossess a car at around 10 a.m., which led to an altercation with the owner of the vehicle.
“The victim sees him trying to repossess his vehicle, the victim confronts the tow truck driver, some sort of altercation ensued between the victim and the shooter, and that’s when shots were fired,” said Fort Lauderdale Police spokesperson Casey Liening.
The tow truck driver and his wife both dialed 911.
“Please! I need, I need, I need police right now! I need, I need, I need ambulance right now!” said the tow truck driver.
His wife told a dispatcher that her husband was initially having trouble getting through to 911.
“Hi there, ma’am. I do not have the exact address. My husband keeps on trying to call you guys, but for whatever reason, his phone keeps on freezing,” she told the dispatcher.
“He didn’t tell you what exactly happened?” said the dispatcher.
“No, he just told me that he’s working, ’cause I know he’s working. He left this morning, but I don’t have any, like, information for you. He’s like in full panic mode. Imagine,” the tow truck driver’s wife said.
A neighbor said she heard the gunshots.
“It sounded like four shots. It sounded [like], ‘pop, pop, pop, pop.’ You know, It was very loud,” she said.
Another area resident said she saw the tow truck driver moments after the shooting.
“The tow truck driver was just standing over the body on the phone. He looked up, started looking around, started seeing multiple people coming up, and that’s when he started jumping up and down saying, ‘I think I just killed a man,'” she said.
Police said the victim died at the scene.
“He had no weapon. He didn’t even have on shoes. It looked like he’d just got out of bed,” said the woman, describing the victim.
Witnesses said his young daughter was just a few feet away from him.
“I saw a little bit of the blood. I didn’t see him moving,” said witness Robert Sowell, “so, don’t get me wrong, it took me for a bit of a loop because his daughter was actually just standing by the car by herself, so it hit me hard.”
7SkyForce hovered over the scene where a blue tarp was seen covering the man’s body. It was later removed from the scene.
Police said they detained the tow truck driver, who is cooperating with the investigation.
An investigation into the shooting is underway.
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