Florida Deputy Fabricated Story About Being Carjacked, Shot by Black Men After Accidentally Shooting Himself

Dakotah Wood
Dakotah Wood Facebook

Florida man lost his job at a local sheriff's office and faces criminal charges after allegedly fabricating a story, claiming that he was the victim of an attempted carjacking and shooting by two black men, according to the sheriff's office.

Dakotah Wood, 21, of Weeki Wachee, Florida, initially told deputies that the two men shot him in the leg and he returned fire. However, it was later revealed that he accidentally shot himself, Hernando County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) said in a press release on Friday.

Wood Reported Being Shot at By 'Two Unknown Black Males'

HCSO deputies responded at roughly 3:30 a.m. local time to the call regarding an attempted carjacking and shooting, according to the statement. Wood told the deputies, according Nienhuis, that while he was at Linda Pedersen Park that "two unknown black males" tried to steal his vehicle.

Wood told investigators that the men displayed a gun and threatened to kill him before shooting him in the thigh, adding that the shooters collected the shell casing prior to fleeing on foot. After being hit in the leg, Wood said he grabbed his personal firearm and "fired approximately five rounds in self-defense," and told HCSO deputies that he believed he hit one of the suspects "several times," the sheriff said.

Wood Confessed to Shooting Himself While Receiving Treatment, Said He Fabricated Story to Avoid 'Trouble'

Wood was transported to an area hospital for treatment of his gunshot wound, according to HCSO's statement, that's where he allegedly confessed the whole ordeal was made up.

When interviewed at the hospital, Nienhuis said that Wood admitted to investigators he lied about the carjacking story. Wood said he drove to Linda Pedersen Park because he was "upset over issues he was having with his girlfriend." He told HCSO deputies that he was "playing" with his gun in his vehicle when the firearm accidentally discharged and shot him in the thigh.

He told investigators that made up the story because he "did not want to get into trouble," the sheriff said. "These types of situations are relatively rare, unfortunate, and unpleasant," Nienhuis said. "My administration, however, has a very public reputation of holding my people accountable for their actions. The public can be confident that when an employee does something of this nature, they will forfeit their ability to be associated with the Hernando County Sheriff's Office."

Wood resigned from his job as a telecommunicator with HCSO amid the investigation into the June 30 incident, Sheriff Al Nienhuis said in the statement, which was also shared on Facebook. Wood faces charges of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence, false reports of commission of crimes, and discharging a firearm in public or residential property.