A standoff and shootout with armed runaways Tuesday night at a Deltona home ended with deputies shooting a 14-year-old girl, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office.
The girl is in stable condition, the sheriff’s office said, after being taken to Central Florida Regional Hospital with gunshot wounds that threatened to end her life.
Volusia County Sheriff’ Mike Chitwood said deputies didn’t have a choice after the teen and her 12-year-old cohort fired at deputies four times between 8:28 p.m. and 8:54 p.m. from inside the house.
“Eventually, after all this goes on and we try to de-escalate — we throw a cellphone into the house, try to talk to them — the 14-year-old comes out of the house with a pump shotgun, levels it at deputies,” Chitwood said, “and, despite warnings to drop it, she walks back into the garage, she comes back a second time and that’s when deputies fire after taking multiple rounds.”
The boy was taken to the same hospital as the girl because he’s a diabetic who needed his medication immediately, the Volusia Sheriff’s Office said.
Neither the home nor the weapons belonged to the boy or girl. Chitwood said they broke into the home through a window, drawing the attention of a person passing by. That witness told deputies, who contacted one of the homeowners, which Volusia County property records identify as A.J. and Amber Bedizel. A.J. Bedizel said nobody should be in the house, but what should be in the house are a handgun, shotgun, AK-47 and ammunition.
The two kids, whom the Miami Herald is not identifying because of their ages, were runaways from Enterprise’s Florida United Methodist Children’s Home (FUMCH), about a mile and a half from the Deltona house. The sheriff’s office said it dealt with “close to 300”calls in 2020 at FUMCH.
Chitwood called the home “a complete failure and disgrace to the juvenile justice system in the state of Florida,” and said the boy was transferred there after stealing puppies and burning down a halfway house in Flagler County.
“Because the juvenile justice system works so well here in the state of Florida,” Chitwood said.