Family stands behind man accused of shooting deputy, says it was out of character

David Meadows held without bond

MULBERRY, Fla. - The family of a man accused of shooting a deputy Sunday is standing behind him, saying it was out of character.

On Monday, a judge ordered Doug Meadows held without bond.  Among his charges:  Seven counts of attempted murder of a police officer.

Deputies responded to a report of an attempted suicide at the Mulberry home.  When the arrived, they found Meadows barricaded inside.

"I said, ‘Doug, just give me the gun, please give me the gun,'" said Nicole Meadows, David's wife. "I was so scared, because I didn't know if he was going to shoot himself in front of me or shoot me."

Instead, investigators say Meadows -- in a drunken rage -- shot a veteran deputy who was part of the SWAT team that responded to the home.

A bullet that ricocheted off the ground hit the deputy in the right leg.  His injuries were not life threatening.

Family and friends are putting their support behind Meadows.

"It's just not Doug.  It's just way out of character," said Buddy Christ, one of his friends.

They all say Doug was going through a time in his life that was spinning out of control.

His wife says he was in so much pain from a motorcycle accident six years ago that not even pain medication could fix.

That's why, they say, he resorted to alcohol.

"He just snapped, because my husband would never, ever try to hurt me, or try to hurt any law enforcement officer," she said. "It was not my husband."

Sheriff Grady Judd said the only reason Meadows did not kill one of his deputies was because they sent a robot into the house after him.

He shot that up, too.

While Meadows' case moves through the court system, Nicole moved out of their damaged and punctured house.

The memory there is one she would like to forget.

"It's like a bad nightmare, and I just want to wake up and him be here," she said.

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