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When injunction fails, bullet stops man's attack

A husband is wounded by police, who say they found him knifing his wife and daughter.

By JOE HUMPHREY

© St. Petersburg Times, published May 9, 2000


TEMPLE TERRACE -- Ora D. Jones won a court order in February to keep her husband away from her.

"I am afraid he will hurt me because I won't go back to him," she wrote in a petition for a restraining order.

Her fears were confirmed Sunday night, when Johnnie Lee Jones ignored the injunction and tried to kill Mrs. Jones and her daughter, 27-year-old Erika D. Shumpert, police said.

Police ended the attack by shooting Jones in his upper left shoulder after he repeatedly refused to stop cutting Shumpert and drop a knife, they say. Jones, 54, was in police custody Monday at Tampa General Hospital, listed in fair condition.

Capt. Tracy E. Mishler said it was the first time Temple Terrace Police have shot a suspect in the 25 years he has been on the force. But it was a shot that likely saved lives, he said. "If officers hadn't arrived quickly and did what they had to do, there is no doubt there might have been a homicide," Mishler said. "He made threats to kill them, and he was definitely going about business to do that."

Mrs. Jones, 48, and Shumpert were treated for cuts and released Monday morning. Mrs. Jones declined comment Monday afternoon from her residence in the Summit West Apartments off Fowler Avenue just west of Interstate 75.

Her husband of almost six years, who lives at Rochelle Lane in Temple Terrace, was charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder, armed burglary and violating a domestic violence injunction.

The officer who shot Jones, David Thornton, was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation by the Temple Terrace Police Department and the State Attorney's Office.

The Joneses separated in October 1999. In court documents filed in February, Mrs. Jones said her husband abuses medication intended to curb the Vietnam veteran's post-traumatic stress disorder. "He abuses his medication," she wrote, "which makes him very violent."

When Jones received a copy of the domestic violence injunction Feb. 21, he denied harassing his wife, according to court records.

Sunday, police said, Jones used a 5-gallon bucket to scale an 8-foot concrete wall, then entered Mrs. Jones' living room through an open sliding glass door. He began stabbing his wife with a steak knife, police said. Shumpert, who was in the back of the apartment she shares with her mother, called 911 at 10:27 p.m.

Four minutes later, two police officers arrived. Police said they told Jones several times to release Shumpert, but he refused. After a bloodied Shumpert slipped out of Jones' arms, police said, Thornton fired a single round.

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