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UPDATE: Land O' Lakes Man Shot After Aiming Rifle At Sarasota Deputies

Sarasota County Sheriff's Office says that the man led them on a chase through Sarasota before they arrived at a home where the man aimed a rifle at deputies.

A Land O' Lakes man with a violent history is recovering from a bullet wound today after the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office says he aimed a rifle at a deputy.

The incident started when deputies attempted to pull over a red Chrysler convertible on U.S. 301 near Myrtle in Sarasota for speeding just after 2 a.m. Tuesday, but the car drove off after it initially pulled over near Bahia Vista and U.S. 41, according to the sheriff's office. 

Deputies didn't pursue the car, but instead drove to the address registered to the car, 3500 Aloha Way, arriving there at 3:30 a.m., according to the sheriff's office. When deputies arrived, the red car was parked in the driveway and Gudmestad's driver's license laid on the ground, according to the affidavit.

That's when deputies found the suspect, Lawrence John Gudmestad, 49, hiding inside the bathroom shower, where he hid behind the curtain with the 22-caliber rifle, according to the affidavit.

Deputy John Gnesin and Sgt. Mark Tulis retreated out of the home and took cover behind their patrol cars, when Gudmestad came out of the home with the rifle and refused trop drop it despite the commands from the sheriff's deputies, according to the affidavit.

Gudmestad then aimed the rifle at Tulis and Gnesin, prompting the two to fire at the suspect, according to the sheriff's office.

Gudmestad was struck by bullet fragments in his shoulder and is being treated at Sarasota Memorial Hospital for the gunshot wound, described as a non-life threatening injury, and is expected to be released later today, according to the sheriff's office.

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According to the sheriff's office, Gudmestad, whose last known address was 19251 Weymouth Drive, Land O' Lakes, will be booked into Sarasota County Jail on:

  • two counts of aggravated assault with a firearm on a law enforcement officer
  • one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon
  • one count of aggravated fleeing to elude law enforcement

Gudmestad, who was born in New Jersey, has a long arrest history for violent crimes in several Florida counties as well as in Michigan and New Jersey, according to the sheriff's office.

In Florida alone, Gudmestad has 36 felony charges, 15 felony convictions and he was sentenced to prison five times, according to the sheriff's office. His crimes include aggravated assault, battery, robbery, drugs and weapons charges.

Tulis and Gnesin are on routine paid administrative leave until the shooting investigation is complete, according to the sheriff's office.

Tulis, 33, was hired in 2002 while Gnesin, 30, was hired in 2009, according to the sheriff's office.

Lori McCandrew January 23, 2013 at 02:20 AM
And this guy was out free roaming the streets why????
Tacy Oleson January 25, 2013 at 10:05 PM
I have known this man for 32 years. I'm his ex-wife and know he would not have fired at anyone. He was, Im sure trying to get the police to shot and kill him. Larry has been in alot of trouble all his life...he's had a very hard life but has needed help since he was a teenager. His mother told him all the time growing up that she never wanted him and wished she never had him. She should be put away for messing him up so bad as a child. If the system had treated him years ago instead of just locking him away it never would have come to this. I feel sorry for him...down deep all he has ever wanted was to be loved and have a normal life. He's never been a real threat...he screws up and shows his a-s but it's always been because he needed treatment and couldn't get it. I'm so sorry Larry. I know what you were doing. I'm glad you're not dead but Florida is going to throw the book at you this time. I so hoped that things would work out for you and you'd have the happy normal life you've always wanted. (He finally met someone he was totally inlove with and was to be getting married soon) This is so sad. He'd never hurt anyone...his bit--h of a mother shoud be put away...It would blow you're mind if you knew what that woman is like and what she did to mess him up. I'm praying for you Larry.

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