A 60-year-old man was shot by police in his own driveway — the officers involved mistakenly thought the man was a car thief.

Roy Middleton lives in Pensacola, Florida. He was in his driveway at 2:30am on July 27 getting a cigarette from his mother’s Lincoln Town Car. Middleton lives with his mother and wife, and his name is listed on the car’s insurance.


But one of Middleton’s neighbors saw him in the driveway, became suspicious of a car break in, and then called police.

Officers Jeremiah Meeks, Sgt. Matthew White and Charles Wright promptly arrived at Middleton’s house a few minutes later. As soon as they spotted Middleton, they ordered the man to put his hands in the air. According to the officers, Middleton then hesitated to take their order.

It was then that they shot the man. 15 bullets were fired, two of which hit Middleton in the legs.

The officers continue to defend their actions, claiming that they had reasonable cause to fire after Middleton did not follow their orders. They also claim Middleton appeared to reach for a metal object after refusing to put his hands up.

Sheriff Morgan, the officers’ superior, said, “There was nothing glaringly apparent to us that the officers did that was out of the ordinary in the given set of circumstances as have been given to us.”

Middleton, on the other hand, told a different story.

He claimed he was not asked for identification or asked any questions before being shot. The metal object he was reaching for was a keychain, he said.

After the shooting, Middleton had to get surgery to put metal rods in his left leg. He can now do little without feeling severe pain.

Middleton said, “I ask myself why they shot me first. And why they shot me so many times afterwards. Yeah, I ask why — that’s all I can ask is why.”

Currently, the officers involved are on paid leave while investigators get to the bottom of the issue and determine if charges will be brought against them. 

Middleton said he will be filing a civil lawsuit against the officers for excessive force. He wants them to cover his medical bills, but he said more importantly he wants an apology.

Middleton said he has been living in agony since the event, and suffers from traumatic nightmares. His wife Sharlet said, “He still tries to be the Roy that we all know, but he’s not.”

Do you think the officers had probable cause to shoot Middleton? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Kristin Tate is a multi-media reporter for Breitbart News and BenSwann.com.Dedicated to fearless journalism, she regularly works on undercover stings with James O'Keefe to reveal government waste, abuse, and fraud.Tate was a Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) Chapter President and Founder. She will continue to fight tirelessly for individual liberty and free markets through new media. Visit Kristin's website at www.TheLibertarianChick.com.

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  • Serenity

    This is terrible, and outrage should be felt by all, black AND white; HOWEVER, we don’t know what these policemen are being told by their departments to make them so trigger-happy. I think they are being scared to death about how bad “we the people” are!

    Hey, wurd-up to anyone who will listen, “the people” just want fairness and truth.

  • kfander

    “The officers continue to defend their actions, claiming that they had reasonable cause to fire after Middleton did not follow their orders. ”

    There was a time, in America, when we believed that the job of the police was to maintain order, not give orders. This man was in his own driveway, violating no laws. The police had no right to be giving him orders, and he was under no obligation to obey them. I thought we quit being “subjects” when we overthrew the King in this country.

    • Gregory Alan of Johnson

      The 14th amendment brought back subjection.

  • Marv N Gardenz

    No justification, First Blood! Welcome to North Korea Police State, ObamaNation.

  • Thomas Smith

    “An illegal arrest is an assault and battery. The person so attempted to be restrained of his liberty has the same right to use force in defending himself as he would in repelling any other assault and battery.” (State v. Robinson, 145 ME. 77, 72 ATL. 260).

  • Integrity

    No justification

  • greenebeane

    The problem is that the police nation wide have lost their humanity and compassion for fellow man. I know its a jungle out there but I am starting to see a pattern. I think it would be a good idea that ALL cops be ordered to watch at least 10 hours of “Andy Griffith Show” each month so they can remember what it is like to be a real person and how to have some compassion for people no matter what. That does not mean that everyone will respond to this approach but it should be the first line of defense, not a blasting gun fight! I live in California and see this senseless stuff all the time.

  • http://www.scottiesharpe.com/ Scottie Sharpe

    Meeks, White and Wright are LUCKY they didn’t kill Middleton. Otherwise they’d be guilty of manslaughter. As it is, they will be lucky to keep their jobs and make Middleton a very wealthy man – and just think….all this incompetence and injustice is provided to us at taxpayer’s expense.

  • shakyrn

    I live in Pensacola. I am cultured, intelligent and white. I can tell you that the police have gotten away with murdering black men more than once here. This poor kid was riding his bike home and a policeman shot and killed him for ABSOLUTELY NO REASON. Just like they shot this poor guy. Just like they murdered Willie. Jr. Sherriff Morgan is horrible and his crew are nothing but life thieves. They always get away with what they do. I am appalled at this reality of my home town.

    • Amanda Mize

      id be moving….
      there will come a day when enough is enough and its gunna explode all over Florida like it did in LA years ago, and pretty much that will end up all over its already started and only gunna get worse and just like then and now there will be so many innocent people hurt and killed because people cant live in peace they dont know how and for the few of us that could and want to and beg for it WE WILL NEVER HAVE IT be it whatever color of skin u have, ive raised my childeren to be COLOR BLIND as i am and only look at who the person is on the inside so far it has worked im scared one day that will be forgotten in their minds….the world doesnt allow for people to be peace loving hardly at all anymore just seems like all most want to do is kill eachother :(

  • Alexander Paulsen

    Trigger happy sociopaths.

  • Alexander Paulsen

    I remember a time when police officers used to hold it as badge of honor that they never had to pull their duty weapon, but were always able to defuse the situation before it escalated. Now these maniacs shoot at anything that moves. 15 rounds?!!!!??? Both those cops belong in a hospital for the criminally insane.

    • Joseph C. Carbone III

      All three…, right?

      • Alexander Paulsen

        Yes sorry all 3

  • Brian Martin

    Well, if police are going to come after me and shoot at me, I’d like it to be these three crack shots. 15 rounds and they hit him twice, in the legs? Nice work guys. Fortunately, they were incredibly bad shots or he wouldn’t have been interviewed

  • juanitarojas

    A) Keychain: deadly weapon
    B) Smoking: capital offense
    C) Car burglary: capital offense
    D) Being black: capital offense

    Choose at least one.

    • Amanda Mize

      on D my thoughts exactly!

  • Gregory Alan of Johnson

    This is beyond excessive. This is “DWB” without the “D” (Driving While Black). The mere fact that these fools are still employed tells me much about their municipality and the department therein. It is very clear that it’s almost a “shoot first/ask questions later” perspective. In any suit brought I’d also include the neighbor that initiated all this originally. As to the question at the bottom of the article, there was NO “probable-cause” for the guns to be out of their holster, let alone used.

  • NadePaulKuciGravMcKi

    We all know exactly what this is
    don’t have to be black to know
    the DHS Police State is here
    Dept. of Fatherland Terror
    rethink 9 11 2001

  • Joseph C. Carbone III

    The officers did not have cause to give the man commands, leave alone draw their weapons. What is difficult for me to appreciate is that these men are on paid leave when the appropriate action should have been immediate suspension, intentions to terminate, and criminal misconduct filed by the DA.

    I am interested to know Sheriff Nick Finch has to say about this, the Floridian Sheriff arrested for protecting citizen rights.

    Sincerely, Joseph C. Carbone III; 26 August 2013

  • LetsTryLibertyAgain

    “He was in his driveway at 2:30am on July 27 getting a cigarette from his mother’s Lincoln Town Car.”

    See? Smoking kills.

    “Middleton’s neighbors saw him in the driveway, became suspicious of a car break in, and then called police.”

    People are gradually learning that calling the police often makes matters worse. If you don’t want your dog killed, your autistic child tasered, or your neighbor shot, then don’t dial 911.

    “15 bullets were fired, two of which hit Middleton in the legs.”

    Good shooting! That’s why Barney Fife only had one bullet, and it was green from corrosion because Andy made him carry it in his shirt pocket. Pray that your police are this inept when they start shooting at you.

    “I ask myself why they shot me first. And why they shot me so many times afterwards.”

    The police answer to this question is inevitably some nonsense based on the principle that, “I’m going home at the end of the day.” With the public considered the enemy instead of the taxpayers who pay the police to protect them, and a system that has almost no accountability for even the most egregious police behavior (like this), the Shoot First And Ask Questions Later policy is inevitable.

    • Joseph C. Carbone III

      Not that rupturing someone’s femoral artery would be doing any favors, my second thought was that they must have been aiming low on purpose.

      My first thought was they were incredibly panicked because all three knew of the others horrid lack of weapons proficiency. JCCIII

  • poptoy1949

    Sue the hell out of them.

  • Linda

    Due to all the police violence against citizens we are
    issuing this warning. If you need help,
    are being assaulted, raped, or robbed… DO NOT CALL THE POLICE… if you own a
    gun, use drugs, have children in your home, are in the military or a retired
    veteran, are a Conservative or Christian, or have someone who needs help, Call
    Neighborhood Watch, a friend, your mother, or just start shooting. It’s really safer. A NY judge has ruled that police do not have to protect citizens
    from assailants that MIGHT have a gun.

    • Randy Wingate

      What is the point of the police if their job isn’t to protect? It would be to monitor us. They don’t want to look out for us. They just want to be able to track ALL the money.

  • Patrick Piklapp

    15 rounds and only two hits???? My half blind cousin can hit a target that sized at least 13 out of 15.

  • Sarah Clare

    YOU DO NOT FIRE AT SOME ONE FIRST YOU DUMB EXCUSES FOR A BADGE! I have a law enforcement back ground, he hesitated he didn’t produce a weapon or lunge at you. NOW YOU GET BUTT F’ed in COUNTY! IT’S WHAT YOU DESERVE!

  • Amanda Mize

    2 cops one man and no questions asked first??
    that is not the way they are supposed to do it and im not even a cop
    i do believe what has taken place in florida courtrooms has only more
    than highly intensified what has been going on for centuries….. RACISM, and i
    think anyone with a cell in their brain automatically knows it!

  • Spyke

    Paid leave! HA! These pigs give REAL cops a bad name! My father was a cop for 29 years! NEVER had to pull a weapon (gun, taser, baton, etc)! NOTHING! He’s told me time and time again: “The difference between a good cop and a bad cop is how well they communicate! You can talk yourself out of almost any situation!”

    These are not cops! These guys are flat-out pigs and should be treated as such! I propose a new law… These guys wanna call themselves “officials” and “authorities” and call us lowly “civilians”? Then fine, hold them all to a higher standard! If it’s life in prison for a “civilian”, then it should be death by public hanging for them! We also need citizen advocacy groups in every town! Stop the corruption and abuse NOW!

  • systemcrush

    This kinda sh@t happens a lot and these bastards always get away with it . we need to change laws and how they protect these pigs. I’m glad he’s taking legal action unfortunately tax payers will have to foot the bill . I think cops should have to start paying out if pocket . maybe then will they think twice when they realize they’ll loose everything they own .

  • Ruths_Husband_Ben

    This is the result of the militarization of the police. Many of them no longer see themselves as having to ‘serve and protect’. Now they see themselves as an occupying army and we the citizens are the enemy.

  • Sagebrush

    Sue these poorly trained individuals and the county for as much as possible. If the settlement is big enough the people of Pensacola might realize, they can’t afford hysterical trigger happy constitutional rights violating cops, shooting up innocent people on their own property. A training program that turns out well trained law officers instead of gun happy hoodlums would be an asset to Pensacola law enforcement and less expensive in the long run.

  • Guest

    Another case of them being trigger happy!

  • wes

    15 SHOTS?… That’s attempted murder… Florida cops just can’t shoot…

  • Steve

    Thank you for this important but painful writeup, Kristin. It is really devastating to see our country drift into an out of control police state. Thank God I live in NH!

  • LoriSlisher

    The sheriff said the officers did nothing that was out of the ordinary. That says it ALL. 15 bullets? 15!!! What happened to, “Good evening, sir. Do you live here? Do you mind us asking a few questions?”

    • YoOleMe


  • Jim

    How is being shot anything other than brutal? haha!

  • D

    More excuses from our militarized police force. This is all to typical. It would be really nice to see a chart showing the amount of cases nation wide where law enforcement actually get fired after incidents such as this one.

  • Citizen with rights

    The jack booted thugs strike again. The entire system of government must be redone. Police officers as well as ANY other government employee must abide by the same laws as it’s citizens. Anything other is in direct violation of the laws of this nation. These officers should stand trial for attempted murder just like any other citizen…

  • Citizen with rights

    Never ever talk to or notify police. Not even to report a crime. We are now on our own out here. As a result of what I have seen and heard over the past few years I would not even call for an ambulance if I saw an officer shot! That is a real shame that the police have drought things to this level.

  • Joe Citizen

    The police are not there to make things right. They are there to ARREST and if ARREST isn’t readily submitted to, then FORCE shall be applied until an ARREST is made.

    • ITSa341

      The sad part is that what you say is true.