Trooper exonerated in Pinellas cemetery shooting - WRBL

Trooper exonerated in Pinellas cemetery shooting

Posted: Updated:
PINELLAS COUNTY, FL -

The FHP Inspector General has cleared State Trooper Daniel Cole of any wrongdoing the morning he fired 18 rounds from his assault rifle, and wounded a Pinellas Park cemetery owner during an ill-fated stolen motorcycle investigation.

The report, finalized last month and released today, cites a prior criminal investigation of the shooting that concluded "Cole's actions during this incident were justified and in accordance with FHP Policy."

Cole made headlines in an earlier incident when he used a taser on a woman who was running from him at an FHP substation after he arrested her. She fell and struck her head causing brain injuries.

The trooper also shot a motorist once who he thought was reaching for a gun during a traffic stop. Investigations in both cases cleared Cole of wrongdoing.

It was foggy and still dark the morning of September 10 last year when Cole tracked a LoJack signal--indicating a stolen vehicle--into the Royal Palm Cemetery in Pinellas Park near I-275. At the time Clifford Work, the cemetery's owner, was sleeping in a shed with a radio blaring.

Work awoke to the sound of someone banging on the door and said he wasn't aware it was a state trooper and Pinellas Park police officers who had arrived for backup.

He opened the door with a gun in his hand and the trooper opened fire with his assault rifle, peppering the shed with 18 rounds and striking Work once in the thigh. Work was seriously wounded, but survived.

The IG report concludes that Cole was in reasonable fear of his life when Work sprung open the door with a .45-caliber pistol in his hand. The 19 page report ends with a single capitalized word: "EXONERATED."

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER: @wflatampa

 

  • NewsMore>>

  • Lakeland man spray-paints garage door with message for thief

    Lakeland man spray-paints garage door with message for thief

    Saturday, July 26 2014 8:41 AM EDT2014-07-26 12:41:29 GMT
    Jerry Ashley's message spray-painted on his garage door.Jerry Ashley's message spray-painted on his garage door.
    A Lakeland man, grieving his wife’s passing, has spray-painted his garage door with a message for the thief who stole his late wife’s laptop filled with sentimental photos.
    A Lakeland man, grieving his wife’s passing, has spray-painted his garage door with a message for the thief who stole his late wife’s laptop filled with sentimental photos.
  • St. Pete man arrested on sex crime charges

    St. Pete man arrested on sex crime charges

    Saturday, July 26 2014 8:13 AM EDT2014-07-26 12:13:26 GMT
    Kent, 67, was arrested on Friday by deputies with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office. Kent, 67, was arrested on Friday by deputies with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
    A 67-year-old St. Petersburg man is behind bars facing a variety of charges stemming from his involvement with three juveniles.Roger Lyle Kent is being held without bond at the Pinellas County Jail. He is charged with three counts of lewd and lascivious molestation; two counts of showing obscene material to minors and one count of committed a prohibited act in the presence of minors.
    A 67-year-old St. Petersburg man is behind bars facing a variety of charges stemming from his involvement with three juveniles.Roger Lyle Kent is being held without bond at the Pinellas County Jail. He is charged with three counts of lewd and lascivious molestation; two counts of showing obscene material to minors and one count of committed a prohibited act in the presence of minors.
  • Largo police say fight led to death

    Largo police say fight led to death

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:16 PM EDT2014-07-26 03:16:34 GMT
    Largo Police are investigating a death after being called to the scene of a fight at the Royal Pine Condominiums at 4500 East Bay Drive at 5:38 p.m.
    Largo Police are investigating a death after being called to the scene of a fight at the Royal Pine Condominiums at 4500 East Bay Drive at 5:38 p.m.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • VIDEO: Intense gator battle at Odessa golf course

    VIDEO: Intense gator battle at Odessa golf course

    Friday, July 25 2014 10:56 AM EDT2014-07-25 14:56:27 GMT
    YouTube imageYouTube image
    An amazing video of two big gators locked in an intense fight might have you wondering how something so dangerous could happen at a golf course. A golfer shot the video using a cell phone
    An amazing video of two big gators locked in an intense fight might have you wondering how something so dangerous could happen at a golf course. A golfer shot the video using a cell phone
  • Restaurant Ratings Most Violations: July 14 -19

    Restaurant Ratings Most Violations: July 14 -19

    Friday, July 25 2014 5:38 PM EDT2014-07-25 21:38:43 GMT
    Ever wonder what goes on in the kitchen of your favorite restaurants? We’ve gathered details about the 30 Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from July 14 to 19, 2014.
    Ever wonder what goes on in the kitchen of your favorite restaurants? We’ve gathered details about the 30 Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from July 14 to 19, 2014.
  • Tumors removed from sea turtle

    Tumors removed from sea turtle

    Friday, July 25 2014 2:30 PM EDT2014-07-25 18:30:33 GMT
    "Before" photo of Mack on 5/28"Before" photo of Mack on 5/28
    Five surgeries at the Turtle Hospital and a trip to the veterinary ophthalmologist in Miami to remove tumors from his cornea and Mack has a reason to smile.
    Five surgeries at the Turtle Hospital and a trip to the veterinary ophthalmologist in Miami to remove tumors from his cornea and Mack has a reason to smile.
Powered by WorldNow

1350 13th Avenue
Columbus, GA 31901

Telephone: 706.323.3333
Fax: 706.327.6655
Email: news@wrbl.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.