A deaf man was killed by a deputy on Saturday, and the shooting is causing buzz on the Internet this week. A plain clothed sheriff deputy shot Edward Miller six times while out on Saturday after the deputy thought he was a threat. The man was carrying a gun on him at the time, but he had a license to carry the gun. The Ledger reported on this tragic story on Sept. 22.
Edward Miller was out with his son on Saturday afternoon when the shooting occurred. The men were having problems with a towing company in the area, and the deputy heard an altercation between the man and employees at the business. Miller and his son were there to pick up a car. The deputy visited the establishment for another reason, and he stepped in to check on things. At the time, the deputy did not know that the man was deaf. Miller lost his hearing as a child after contracting mumps. Later in life, an accident while cutting a tree disabled him.
The deputy was not in uniform at the time, but he did identify himself to the man. When he perceived Miller to be a threat, he shot the man six times. After the shooting, Sheriff Ben Johnson of the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department said the man was “brandishing a firearm” before the deputy fired. Miller’s son, also named Edward, said the gun was tucked into father’s pants and covered by his shirt that day. Miller said the following about his father to the press on Sunday:
“My dad was a loving, caring person. He would give the shirt off his back to anyone. can’t be here in Daytona Beach after what happened.”
This was not the first incident at Fryer’s Towing Service involving Miller. Police were called to the business the night before by employees because they saw Edward’s gun, and he was being rude to the staff. He was yelling at them, but that could be because of his hearing problems. With his hearing aid, the man could hear at 2%. However, his family revealed after the shooting that the batteries in his hearing aid had gone dead, so he could not hear anything at all.
This fatal shooting is now under investigation by both the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The man’s son revealed that the Florida authorities have asked the family not to speak to the press during the investigation. Edward Miller even admitted that the police tried to hide him from the cameras at the crime scene.
Joel Hernandez is the deputy involved in this shooting, and he works with the auto theft unit. It is not known how he tried identifying himself during the incident on Saturday afternoon. However, this is not the first fatal shooting Hernandez has been involved in, according to New York Daily News. A year ago, the deputy shot and killed a suicidal man who ignored police orders. He was not found at fault for that incident after an investigation. However, a month later, the sheriff’s office reprimanded the man in another incident for using excessive force. During this current investigation, Hernandez is on administrative leave with pay.
Edward Miller was 52-years-old at the time of the shooting. He recently celebrated 30 years of marriage with his wife Gina. This investigation is currently ongoing, and the family retained an attorney since they spoke to the press on Sunday.