The brutal attack of a Bradenton, Florida, police officer was caught on surveillance cameras early Sunday morning, April 2.
Lieutenant William Weldon was responding to a tripped alarm at a jewelry store when Isaac Dubon, an illegal alien from Honduras, attacked him. Dubon viciously tried to gouge out Lt. Weldon’s eyes in a horrifying incident the officer isn’t likely to forget.
With bloodshot eyes, Lt. Weldon recalls, “I was afraid for my life.”
The lieutenant says 23-year-old Dubon was not armed, so he put away his weapon as he had no intention to fire upon an unarmed man. That’s when Dubon seized the opportunity. He attacked Weldon, trying to steal his gun while pressing his fingers into Weldon’s eyes.
“His fingers were going into my eye sockets,” Weldon recounts. “My life was in danger and I needed to do whatever I could do to get out of there alive.”
Citing his hesitance to use lethal force, Weldon said he was trying to do whatever he could to survive the attack.
“I was seeing multiple images of him so I didn’t know exactly where I was at, so you see me waving my hand back and forth [on the video],” says Weldon.
After a grueling struggle, he managed to hit Dubon with his gun. That’s when backup arrived.
“We don’t come to work thinking we’re gonna have to shoot somebody, or [that] we want to shoot somebody, so anytime that you can get into a fight like this and you walk away … both people walk away, then it’s always a good day,” Weldon said.
Dubon has no prior criminal record but is suspected of other crimes in the area.
Police Chief Melanie Bevan believes the attack was avoidable. While supportive of Lt. Weldon, she blames Slomin’s Security, the company responsible for the jewelry store’s security system, for false information that lead Lt. Weldon to enter the store alone.
Slomin’s Security alerted the Bradenton Police Department to the tripped alarm. The description of the situation was not accurate, however. The police were told that it was a general burglary alarm and that the key holder was on site. They further advised that the person at the site had given the proper codes and wanted to talk to the police.
Instead, Lt. Weldon arrived at a business with a burglary in progress and a violent man inside.
“He arrived under the assumption that this was a call, … a standard call of a homeowner who had tripped the alarm system. He was under the assumption that it was a false alarm and so he approached by himself,” said Lt. Brian Thiers, spokesman for Bradenton Police.
Bevan was highly critical of the security company. “Errors on their part almost resulted in a catastrophic event and we don’t take that lightly, and we’re going to hold them responsible for that,” she said.
Bevan commended Weldon and gave him time off to recover, even though he was willing to come back the next day.
“It’s easy to sit back and look at a video and say, ‘Well, I could’ve done this, I could’ve done that,’” Weldon says of the incident. “But, in the heat of the moment, you got milliseconds to make decisions and you make the best decision you can at the moment.”
Dubon is currently detained at the Manatee County Jail.
Below is the full surveillance video of the incident.
Another video with an update on the story and an interview with the police officer.
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