Florida deputy airlifted to hospital after shooting in Highlands County

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A Florida sheriff's deputy was left clinging to life after being shot in the head Sunday while responding to a neighbors' dispute over a cat.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that a homeowner called 911 to report that her neighbor shot her cat in Lake Placid, about 100 miles southeast of Tampa.

When Deputy Gentry made contact with Ables at his front door, Ables pulled out a gun and shot Deputy Gentry in the head, Sheriff Paul Blackman explained during an early morning press conference.

The sheriff said Deputy Gentry was 40 years old and had been with the agency for more than eight years.

Ables was charged Monday with attempted first-degree murder, possession of a weapon by a felon, resisting an officer with violence, among other things.

Also, the Sheriff's Office will hold its own candlelight vigil Wednesday at 8 p.m.at Fireman's Field at the Highlands Fairgrounds.

Police describe Ables as a felon with a history of violence toward police.

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Arrest records show Ables had about 2 years left of probation for spraying mace at Dolan's grandfather.

Gentry nor the practice officer exchanged gunfire Blackman stated.

According to a post on the Higlands County sheriff's office Facebook page, Gentry was a nine-year veteran of the force, who had recently rejoined the Highlands County Sheriff's Office in February 2017.

As members of law enforcement visited Lee Memorial throughout the day, Lt. Bueno says it's proof that they are all bonded closely together. Today, my wife, Ann, and I join all Floridians in mourning the loss of another Florida hero, Deputy William Gentry, whose life has now been senselessly taken.

On Tuesday, May 15, at 11 a.m.at the Highlands News-Sun Center, there will be a law enforcement memorial service where hundreds of officers from across the state and nation are expected to be in attendance.

Lake Placid is about two hours southeast of Tampa.

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