1 shot during Friday night altercation in Fort Meade; gunman not in custody
Witnesses: Vehicle crashed near shooting scene
5:11 PM, Sep 14, 2013
6:36 AM, Sep 15, 2013
FORT MEADE, Fla. - A large law enforcement presence in Fort Meade on Friday night was triggered by a shooting and car crash following an altercation.
According to Polk County Sheriff's spokesperson Scott Wilder, Ramon Prieto, 31, of Ft. Meade, was shot twice on the west side of the town in what appears to be an altercation that began with a disagreement involving several people Friday night around 11 p.m.
Prieto had been shot in some type of altercation on or near the porch of a home at 492 Mosley Rd. Wilder said detectives found drugs and drug paraphernalia inside the home during their investigation.
"It was two acquaintances who planned to meet to fight and one brought a gun," Wilder said.
Deputies originally responded to the area for the report of a traffic crash. They determined that the shooting occurred before the crash at Hwy. 98 and Sand Mountain Road, about one mile north of the shooting.
A witness said he heard a loud bang and saw a vehicle that had crashed into a parked vehicle.
Wilder confirmed that the vehicle was fleeing the scene of the shooting, but did not elaborate on who was in the vehicle and how they were involved in the shooting.
A source told ABC Action News on Saturday that the vehicle was headed north on Sand Mountain Road, crossed Hwy. 98 and slammed into a parked RV.
Several people were in the RV at the time, but they did not sustain serious injuries.
A person in the crashed vehicle was rushed to a landing zone on the north side of the town and airlifted to Lakeland Regional Medical Center.
Wilder said Prieto was airlifted to LRMC, but did not say if Prieto was involved in the crash.
Prieto was in critical condition Saturday.
The shooting and crash forced the closure of Sand Mountain Road at Hwy. 98, but the roadway reopened Saturday morning.
Wilder said the shooting may fall under Florida's "Stand Your Ground Law," but the investigation was ongoing and no decision had been made on whether to press charges or not.
Detectives have interviewed several witnesses, but had not arrested a gunman Saturday.