A gunman and two victims were killed and two other people were critically injured after the man took hostages and barricaded himself inside an RV in Deerfield Beach in a standoff that lasted more than seven hours, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.
The bodies were found around 1:30 a.m. Friday after a SWAT team "made entry into the recreational vehicle" in which the gunman had barricaded himself for the entirety of Thursday night, the sheriff's office said.
Among those killed was a 9-year-old boy and an adult male, the sheriff's office said.
A woman and a 7-year-old boy were left critically injured after the standoff injured. The woman was taken to North Broward Medical Center in critical condition, and the little boy was taken to Broward General Medical Center in critical condition, authorities said.
"This was such a devastating outcome, with a little boy found dead, a woman critically injured and another little boy critically injured," BSO spokeswoman Dani Moschella said. "It was very difficult for everybody here."
None of the victims has been identified, though a woman who emerged from the RV unharmed said the woman and two children were the suspect's family, the BSO said.
The incident began at about 6:30 p.m. when the suspect shot a man outside a RV at the Highland Woods trailer park at 900 Northeast 48th Street Lot 61, police said.
The suspect was at one point holed up in a RV with as many as five other people, and later two, as he held a gun to a woman’s head, police said.
But that hostage made it out and is safe, her daughter told NBC Miami.
Her mother called her and frantically explained that the gunman was pointing the barrel at her head, she said. The daughter added that she thought her mom was joking.
Within the hour, her mother was inexplicably released.
Just before 8:30 p.m., Broward Sheriff's Office vehicles with massive shields were moving in to try and remove an injured person laying motionless on the ground. The man appeared to be the victim who was shot earlier. But police could not get him because of the gunman, who said he would shoot if they came too close, Moschella said.
Frustrated medical crews waited impatiently, and shortly before 9:30 p.m. police were able to get the victim away from the RV, but confirmed the man had died.
The suspect was believed to be a stranger to the shooting victim, the BSO said.
Police had said they spoke with the gunman on his cell phone.
“We have had intermittent contact with him. He is still refusing to come out. He is still making threats," Moschella said earlier.
A large number of SWAT vehicles and personnel responded to the scene, and Northeast 48th Street was shut to vehicle and pedestrian traffic from Dixie Highway to Northeast 3rd Avenue.
The incident had residents of the trailer park shocked.
"Blood all over the place...we were scared," said Gerald Baudin, who said he saw some of the drama unfold. "It's terrible something like that happened, you never thought that would happen here."
Detectives are investigating to determine what circumstances led to the incident.