PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Authorities said an argument about donuts led to a deadly shooting and standoff in Pinellas County on Wednesday morning.
It happened at 5157 80th Way N. in unincorporated Pinellas County.
Authorities were called to the scene after an argument escalated between 25-year-old Jeffrey Falsey and his mother, Susan DiFabbio. Police said the two got into an argument after she refused to buy him donuts.
“We have someone that has very significant mental health issues, a history of domestic violence, history of not getting along with his mother, he’s been charged with domestic battery, he’s out on bond and has acquired a number of firearms and he went off today over donuts, something as silly and stupid as donuts,” said Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri.
The suspect was reportedly upset about the donuts and the presence of Daniel Kulwicki, his mother’s fiance who was a registered sex offender.
DiFabbio contacted authorities, who arrived on the scene a short time later.
She was able to exit the mobile home around the time deputies arrived. When they knocked on the door, nobody answered, but as a man believed to be Falsey yelled for deputies to come in.
Deputies did not enter as a safety precaution and talked to Falsey through the door.
The suspect then proceeded fire off 30 rounds at deputies, squad cars and neighboring homes as seven children across the street watched in horror.
“What it appears is that Falsey was inside. The deputies were at the door. He started firing at them. As they tactically retreated, he was firing at them and tracking them. So, as he was firing at them and as one of them went to the south, he was tracking them and continued to fire, fire, fire,” said Gualtieri.
When law enforcement arrived at the home of Falsey to prevent the carnage from happening, the accused gunman was watching their every move on video surveillance. He had set up cameras outside of his home for protection.
But, Wednesday, investigators maintain the 25-year-old used the cameras to plan the step-by-step ambush mirroring the real-time actions of deputies. It was as if he was planning their demise, moment by moment, according to the deputies’ movements.
“He had nothing on his mind other than killing people and making carnage,” said Gualtieri.
Multiple deputies were pinned down behind cars as Falsey fired at them.
Deputy Michael Ficocelli was called to the scene and was shot in the leg as he tried to retrieve his firearm.
Nine bullet holes were found in deputy cruisers and more bullet holes were discovered in homes across the street.
As for neighbors, they were nearly killed, as well.
A cancer patient, Johnnie Nath, was shaking as she shared her story.
“I was scared, I was scared. My son told me to get down,” she said. “I was so worried for my family.”
When police entered the mobile home, they found Kulwicki dead with a gunshot wound.
Ficocelli was transported to a nearby hospital, where he is being treated with non-life threatening injuries.
Police said Falsey was well-armed and owned a high-powered arsenal of weapons. Several guns and ammunition were reported inside the residence.
Falsey has a history of mental illness and a previous arrest for domestic violence.