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Tuesday 21 November 2017

Man shot dead in row over texting at cinema

Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco speaks to the media as police tape surrounds the Cobb Grove 16 movie theater
Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco speaks to the media as police tape surrounds the Cobb Grove 16 movie theater

Tamara Lush, Florida

An argument over texting in a Florida cinema ended with a retired police officer shooting dead the man sitting in front of him, authorities said.

Curtis Reeves (71) has been charged with second-degree murder.

"I can't believe people would bring a pistol, a gun, to a movie," said Charles Cummings, who was about to watch the movie 'Lone Survivor' on Monday. "I can't believe they would argue and fight and shoot one another over popcorn. Over a cellphone."

Sheriff officials said the shooting happened when Reeves asked 43-year-old Chad Oulson to stop texting.

Reeves and his wife were sitting behind Oulson and his wife. Oulson told Reeves he was texting with his 3-year-old daughter, Cummings said.

"It ended almost as quickly as it started," said sheriff's spokesman Doug Tobin. The sheriff's office says an off-duty deputy detained Reeves until police arrived.

Cummings, who had blood on his clothes, told a group of reporters trailers were playing when the two couples started arguing. The men started raising their voices and popcorn was thrown.

Authorities said Reeves took out a gun, Oulson's wife put her hand over her husband and Reeves fired his weapon, striking Nichole Oulson in the hand and her husband in the chest.

Cummings said Oulson fell onto him and his son. "Blood started coming out of his mouth," said Alex Cummings. "It was just a very bad scene."

Chad Oulson died at a hospital, Tobin said. His wife's injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Irish Independent

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