Update 5 p.m.:
The identity of the armed robbery suspect who reportedly stole money from the Circle K on Poinciana Boulevard and led multiple law enforcement agencies on a high-speed pursuit on Interstate 10 has been identified, along with a second suspect.
Dallas Francis, 33, of Defuniak Springs, was shot twice while exchanging gunfire with police after reportedly robbing the Circle K and was taken to a local hospital for treatment before being booked into the Okaloosa County Jail.
He was charged Saturday with fleeing and attempting to elude law enforcement, aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Francis was convicted guilty in Ohio on June 21, 2007, for carrying a concealed firearm and again on Feb. 7, 2011, in a separate incident. Francis was also convicted on April 18, 2011, for escape and on May 5, 2015, for aggravated robbery.
The Circle K gas station clerk who was initially thought to be the victim of the robbery, Mary Yard, 30, of Defuniak Springs, was also arrested for her involvement in the crime.
Yard lives at the same address as Francis and reportedly drove Francis during the pursuit as he shot at deputies and troopers following an attempted traffic stop.
Yard has been charged with fleeing and eluding and aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer.
Additional charges are pending out of Walton County for Yard and Francis.
A suspect in an armed robbery at a Miramar Beach gas station was taken into custody early Saturday morning after reportedly opening fire during a multi-agency pursuit that ended on Interstate 10.
Walton County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the Circle K on Poinciana Boulevard at 5:20 a.m. Friday after receiving a 911 call regarding a man holding the store clerk at gunpoint, according to a WCSO news release.
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The man took an undisclosed amount of cash and ran east toward a nearby plaza. The WCSO identified a suspect later that day. The suspect’s name had not been released as of Saturday.
A WCSO deputy spotted the suspect vehicle just after midnight Saturday near Sue Lane and County Highway 183 South in Argyle. The suspect immediately opened fire as the deputy attempted a traffic stop, according to the WCSO.
Units continued to pursue the car eastbound into Holmes County on Highway 90 and then south onto State Highway 81, where the suspect turned westbound onto I-10.
The suspect repeatedly threw money out of the window and allegedly pointed a firearm at deputies.
“The suspect was firing from Ponce De Leon all the way to Crestview,” Walton County Sheriff Michael Adkinson said in a video regarding the incident. “There’s multiple places on I-10 where he shot at deputies and police officers and troopers.”
The DeFuniak Springs Police Department was able to spike the vehicle at the 85-mile marker, but the suspect continued hitting speeds more than 100 miles per hour. At that point, the Florida Highway Patrol joined the pursuit.
The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office set up spikes at the 56-mile marker and successfully spiked the vehicle a second time. The car came to a stop at mile marker 53 and the suspect exited shooting, the WCSO reported.
Responding agencies returned fire and injured the suspect. He was taken to the HCA Fort Walton-Destin Hospital.
Another person in the vehicle attempted to run and broke her foot, Okaloosa County Undersheriff Charlie Nix said in a video. She also was taken to the hospital.
“This was basically a gun fight. This suspect was shooting at pursuing officers from the very beginning of this pursuit that started in Walton County,” Nix said. “He exited the vehicle and continued shooting at officers that were pursuing him after he stopped. Very dangerous individual.”
Several patrol vehicles were hit with gunfire. However, no deputies or troopers were injured. At least six patrol vehicles were damaged during the pursuit, which spanned over 65 miles, according to the WCSO.
“This is the first time in a number of years we’ve had to spike—I think we did four or five spike deployments and this individual was driving on the rims for an extended period of time,” Adkinson said. “So it’s an unusual scene with this much shooting for this long period of time.”
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement will be investigating the use of force during the incident, which is standard procedure.
In the video, Adkinson said there may be more suspects involved in the initial armed robbery. However, there is “no danger to the public.” Charges were pending against the suspects taken into custody.
Westbound lanes of I-10 were shut down for at least five hours Saturday morning while multiple law enforcement agencies investigated. The lanes were reopened at 11:29 a.m.
“The bad guy is in the hospital and the good guys are going home. At the end of the day, that’s all that matters,” Adkinson said. “I can not say enough about the excellent teamwork between all of the state and local law enforcement agencies.”
This article originally appeared on Northwest Florida Daily News: Miramar Beach armed robbery suspects arrested