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3 North Port police officers on leave after fatal shooting

Three North Port police officers are on paid administrative leave after they shot and killed a man who pointed a gun at them Tuesday evening.

The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday that North Port police officers were called around 8:30 p.m. to a home on Mossy Oak Drive where a man was making suicidal threats and possible gunshots had been heard.

Police found the man in the driveway of the home, and according to SCSO, the man reached for a handgun in his waistband, pointing it at two officers and causing them to fire at him. The suspect, identified as 47-year-old Howard Owens, died at the scene.

The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office assumed the investigation and three officers involved were placed on leave.

The sheriff’s office said that preliminary investigation revealed Owens previously stated he wanted officers to shoot him and threatened to use a firearm to force them to do so. No one else was injured during the incident.

“We’re confident a thorough independent investigation will be done which will look at all available evidence surrounding this incident. It’s a very unfortunate and sad situation. Our hearts go out to all involved,” said NPPD in a statement.

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