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Officers find shooting suspect

By Times Staff Writer
Published October 26, 2005

TAMPA - Local and federal law enforcement investigators spent a day and a half combing Hillsborough County for the Brandon man accused of trying to kill two Temple Terrace police officers during a traffic stop earlier this week.

Tuesday afternoon, they found him hiding in a relative's car trunk.

Shaka Aquil, 31, was taken into custody by members of the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force - a group of area law enforcement representatives dedicated to tracking down elusive suspects.

Aquil had last been seen early Monday running from the Big Lots parking lot at E Busch Boulevard and 50th Street, where Temple Terrace Officer Zachariah Brown had pulled over the 1998 Lincoln Continental in which he was a passenger. The driver was Derek J. McCalla, 33, of Brandon.

Brown ran background checks on McCalla and Aquil and discovered Aquil was wanted for failing to appear in Hillsborough County court on a solicitation of prostitution charge, said Tampa police spokesman Joe Durkin. As Brown and Senior Police Officer Darrin Berberat walked toward the Lincoln, Aquil leaned out the passenger's side window and fired a pistol at the officers, authorities said. The officers returned fire. No one was injured. Authorities booked Aquil into the county jail on charges of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

[Last modified October 26, 2005, 00:44:15]

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