Two People Shot for Texting at Florida Movie Theater, Retired Police Officer Arrested
Authorities have revealed details on the man in custody suspected of shooting two people inside a Tampa Bay area movie theater.
The Pasco County Sheriff's Office reports that the fatal shooting occurred Monday at The Grove 16 Theater in Wesley Chapel, north of Tampa, Fla., as the two victims were preparing to watch a matinee of Lone Survivor. One of the victims was killed and his wife was wounded.
Witnesses say 71-year-old former cop Curtis Reeves became annoyed at the couple -- identified as Chad and Nichole Oulson -- because they were texting during the movie previews, according to ABC News.
Police told ABC that Reeves asked the couple several times to stop texting, then he left the theater for a few moments. When he returned, Chad Oulson, 43, asked if Reeves reported him to theater management, and then the two began to argue.
Eventually, the suspect pulled out a .380-caliber handgun and shot Oulson in the chest, killing him. Nichole Oulson was wounded when she put her hand in front of the gun just as Reeves pulled the trigger.
ABC said an off-duty deputy subdued Reeves until arresting officers arrived, and he was later charged with second-degree homicide. There were about 25 people in the auditorium at the time of the shooting.
According to the latest AP report, Tampa Police spokeswoman Laura McElroy said in a news release that Reeves was a captain when he retired from the department in 1993. She added that he was instrumental in establishing the agency's first tactical response team. He later worked security for the Busch Gardens theme park and was on the board of a neighboring county's Crime Stoppers organization.
In summer 2012, a man killed a dozen people and injured 70 at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. Twenty-six-year-old James Holmes is charged in the killings.