One man arrested in connection to Sunday’s Ponce De Leon fatal rest stop shooting

Local News

HOLMES COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — Authorities have arrested Latorish Antonio Gardner in connection to Sunday’s fatal shooting at the Ponce De Leon rest stop off of I-10.

One man was killed and a woman was critically injured. The man has been identified as Dereck Todd Thompson Jr. from Pensacola.

BREAKING: One dead and one recovering from critical injuries following a Sunday shooting

Gardner has been charged with an open count of murder and attempted murder.

In a news conference, Holmes County Sheriff, John Tate said they got the call around 2:10 Sunday afternoon about a shooting at the Ponce De Leon rest stop off of I-10.

Tate said Gardner and one of the victims, Mariah Maps from Pensacola, have children together and regularly exchanged the children at that particular rest stop.

Gardner and Mapps were exchanging their children earlier today when they got into a physical altercation.

Thompson, was in the car when Maps and Gardner began fighting. Thompson got out to break up the fight which is when Thompson and Gardner began to fight. The fight between Thompson and Gardner resulted in Gardner pulling out a gun and allegedly shooting Thompson.

Gardner then turned his attention to Maps but she began running through the parking lot. Gardner was shooting at Maps and authorities said it appears one of the bullets went through her and smashed the window of a separate witness’ car.

Gardner then took the children and fled to Jackson County where he was later found and taken into custody by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials said the shooting is still under investigation and Gardner could face more charges. Maps has been transported to the Fort Walton Medical Center to be treated for her injuries.

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