BCSO: Man with Hammer Swings at Sheriff, Threatens to Kill People in Youngstown Store

YOUNGSTOWN, Fla. - At 11:15 a.m. Thursday morning the Bay County Sheriff's Office responded to a call of an armed man at the Rainbow Foods store in Youngstown. 

"Witnesses were saying he was very incoherent and was talking about killing people," said Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford. 

When they arrived they learned the man was armed with a hammer, not a firearm.  Sheriff Ford was one of the first to arrive on scene. He said it appeared the man had crashed a car down the road in the woods. 

"He was bleeding when he was in the store, the store has quite a bit of blood from I guess when he was walking around from the crash," said Sheriff Ford.

When deputies and the Sheriff tried to enter the store the man began hitting the front door with the hammer from inside. Once they were able to get in he swung at them.

"At one point we tried to distract him. Major Stanford was throwing some canned goods at him that distracted him and we were able to take him into custody with a fight," said Sheriff Ford.

Sheriff Ford said at least three employees were hiding in a locked back room and all the customers got out. 

"He charged at us several times and was swinging the hammer. It was definitely a situation we could have used deadly force but I'm proud of all the guys here showing that restraint," said Sheriff Ford.

Waller Elementary School was put on lockdown during the incident as a precaution. The suspect is identified as 25-year-old Justin Tyler Stanford of Fountain has been charged with assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer and assault.

Stanford was taken to the hospital for injuries, and while there attempted to get a gun from a deputy that was watching him in the emergency room for that he was charged with resisting arrest with violence.

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