WELLINGTON — Another day in Florida, another nut firing a gun in a crowded place!
Just hours before Gov. Rick Scott signed a lame gun-control measure today, diners at the hip Wellington hangout Suri West tapas bar ran out of the South Shore Boulevard eatery then watched from the parking lot as a 24-year-old man who fired his gun was tackled by Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputies who happened to be nearby.
Witnesses heard several shots fired in the parking lot about 8:30 p.m. Thursday and deputies recovered a .45 Ruger handgun and a matching shell casing.
No injury was reported.
The suspect was identified as Christian Luis Paz of the nearby Equine Lane. He’s being held on no bail pending mental health evaluation. He was charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a weapon, firing a weapon in public and resisting arrest.
According to the arrest report obtained exclusively by Gossip Extra, deputies were rushing to Suri West after someone from the restaurant called 911 with a report of male with a gun at the busy equestrian hangout.
One deputy said he heard at shot fired and a man screaming when he arrived in the parking lot. His attention was captured by Paz, who was walking away with clothes that matched the description of the gun-wielding suspect.
With their guns aimed at Paz, deputies shouted commands. He didn’t follow orders but was taken down. The Ruger was recovered in a bush near the scene of the arrest. A witness told Gossip Extra he was screaming at deputies as they cuffed him.
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Witness Joaquim De Abreu told police he noticed Paz standing by the bar inside the restaurant with a gun in his hand. Paz was yelling, but didn’t seem to make sense. When he was approached by people in the restaurant, he allegedly aimed his gun at De Abreu and another man, said he was going to kill them, then ran outside.
Once outside Paz, who was dressed in black from head-to-toe, is believed to have fired the gun at least once.
On their report, deputies wrote Paz appears to be a danger to himself and others, and suffers from mental illness.
Suri West patrons, meanwhile, took to social media to tell the world about the incident.
“Laying on the ground, shaking with fear, realizing our lives was in danger, it was then you realize how short life can be and how the gun epidemic in this country needs to be address,” one Facebook post read last night.
One witness told us today Paz worked for Suri West as waiter.
Earlier today, Gov. Scott signed into law gun control measures that include a three-day waiting period before the purchase of a firearm as well as a ban on the sale of guns to people under 21.
Scott was responding to pressure from taxpayers after a 19-year-old carrying an assault rifle sprayed bullets into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine’s Day in Parkland, killing 17 students and staff.