Here’s what happened when a cop pulled his gun and shot a suspect at the Florida Thanksgiving Day parade

By Victoria M. Toksvig, CNN

As the sun rose on Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the first car making its way down Northeast Sixth Avenue, leaving a ghoulish trail of green in its wake, was stopped by Florida Highway Patrol.

A man had taken the wheel of a car and reversed toward an officer before speeding away, authorities said. The officer was not hurt, but this development did not sit well with the locals in the resort city and the aftermath stirred outrage.

While the officers went in pursuit, the horseback riders and the parade entries didn’t wait. They fled the scene, and that’s when things got serious.

Seemingly out of nowhere, the police helicopter trailed a parked car which, from over the police line, jumped a few feet, jumped a curb and into oncoming traffic before slamming into a car going the other way. The impact sent the truck spinning into a fire hydrant, and a woman inside suffered a broken arm and hip.

The Florida Highway Patrol officer crashed his motorcycle on the police line while trying to make the arrest. A short time later, “the driver tried to run into the officers, but the officers, with firearms drawn, shot the suspect,” a statement from the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.

The suspect, 24-year-old Jarell Boyd, has been charged with attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer, unarmed aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, resisting an officer with violence, driving on a suspended license and driving on a suspended license with a previous drunken driving conviction.

The matter was turned over to the FBI, as this is now an on-going investigation. An investigation, we repeat, into the actions of a police officer who drew his firearm and fired at a fleeing suspect.

There are still a few unanswered questions: Why, on Christmas Eve, did Boyd get behind the wheel and allegedly take it out on a cop? Why did the bicycle riders and a horseback riders pursue the fleeing car on foot? Are they just hyperventilating by the sheriff’s office’s description of what happened?

There is no doubt, though, that the horror that unfolded at Eighth and Northeast Sixth was tragic, and for some involved it was a nightmare. That Florida’s Christmas Day parade has been canceled out of respect to those who were injured is the right decision.

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