Fla. 911 Tape Reveals Panic of Slaying Suspect


 
 

Allyson Bird | | Wednesday, March 5, 2008


PALM BEACH, Fla. -- After allegedly shooting a woman who had been drinking at his apartment, Thomas Sutton told a Florida 911 dispatcher it was an accident and that she had pointed a gun at him.

"Do you know who did it?" the dispatcher asks on a 911 recording from about 3 a.m. Friday.

"Yeah I did it on accident," Sutton, 26, replies.

"I was teaching her about firearms," he continues. "I didn't know my weapon was loaded."

From there he becomes more panicked, explaining that he shot Brittany Armstrong, 18, in the head. Almost begging, he says, "Please come soon. She's bleeding out of her eye."

When the dispatcher asks if Armstrong is his girlfriend, Sutton says she just came over to drink.

"She pointed a gun at me, and I freaked out. Oh my God!" he says, looking at the lifeless body on his couch.

Police Sgt. Scott Pascarella said investigators found no evidence that Armstrong threatened Sutton.

"What do I do?" Sutton cries on the line. "Please!"

A paramedic comes onto the line and tells Sutton to move Armstrong to the floor to begin CPR. Moments later, rescue workers arrive.

The tape records Sutton shouting, "No gun! No gun!"

A police report explains that paramedics arrived to find him kneeling beside Armstrong with a semiautomatic pistol in his right hand.

Paramedics flew Armstrong to St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach, where she died at about 7 a.m.

Police arrested Sutton on manslaughter charges. He remains at the Palm Beach County Jail.

Looking around the blood-spattered room, police found two more pistols, the report says.

Sutton told an officer the shooting was an accident, that he couldn't believe what happened and that he shouldn't have been drinking, the report says.

Smelling of alcohol, he explained that he used to work in security or law enforcement and that Armstrong was a police Explorer.

Pascarella said Sutton worked as an auxiliary officer for a few years in Inkster, Mich.

Before asking for an attorney, Sutton told an officer he was trying to teach Armstrong gun safety and thought the weapon wasn't loaded.

Then, according to the report, he added, "Apparently I was wrong."


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Communications and Dispatch, Legal and Ethical

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

 

 

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Innovation & Progress

Follow in the footsteps of these inspirational leaders of EMS.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Tennessee County EMS Shows Off CPR Tool

Lucas 2 in service in Bradley County.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Abilene Loses Helicopter Service

Native Air leaves city with only one air helicopter service.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Fire Chief Proposes another Controversial Ambulance Plan

Staffing change will leave immediate neighborhood without fire apparatus.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

FDIC 2014 CHAT: MIKE MCEVOY AND A.J. HEIGHTMAN

Mike McEvoy and A.J. Heightman discuss some new EMS technology at FDIC 2014.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >