CHIPLEY — Washington and Bay County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a suicide call that resulted in a Washington County woman being shot by SWAT officers following a stand-off on Tuesday afternoon.
EMS was standing by on scene at the time, and rendered immediate aid to the woman, who was then taken via Air Heart to Bay Medical in Panama City. The woman is currently in surgery at this time, according to a sheriff’s office news release.
The woman was identified as 62-year-old Mary Ethel Loflin.
At 12:17 p.m. Washington County Sheriff’s Office received a call from the National Crisis Hotline in reference to a female caller who resided at 5463 North Blue Springs Road in southern Washington County, according to the release.
An officer with Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded and was met by Loflin armed with a rifle in the front yard of the home She told the officer to leave the property. As the officer was leaving, Loflin fired two rounds in the direction of the officer, according to the release. The officer was able to re-enter his vehicle where he was able to request backup.
Officers with both Washington County Sheriff’s Office and Bay County Sheriff Office responded to the scene to assist the officer. Bay County SWAT responded as well as Bay County Sheriff Frank McKeithen.
Washington County Sheriff Bobby Haddock was able to reach Loflin by telephone and during a 15-minute conversation attempted to convince her to relinquish her weapon to authorities, according to the release. Loflin was adamant that any attempt by law enforcement to come near her home would result in her firing on both officers and subsequently herself.
Haddock was able to convince Loflin to accept a phone call from McKeithen, who was on scene at the time. McKeithen was able to speak to Loflin for about an hour. During this time, she remained armed on the porch of her residence, according to the release.
Following this conversation, Bay County SWAT team fired a non-lethal round that struck Loflin and knocked her to the ground. She was able to recover and pointed her weapon in the direction of the SWAT team members. Officers with Bay County SWAT then fired at Loflin, according to the release.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is assisting Washington County Sheriff’s Office with the investigation, officials said.