Shocking video from a Florida sheriff’s office shows a man using a toddler as a human shield during a standoff with police in a McDonald’s parking lot.
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office said that Brandon Matthew Douglas Leohner, 27, allegedly kidnapped a 1-year-old baby at gunpoint from the child’s mother, his girlfriend, and left the home with the boy on his lap just after 6 p.m. on September 27.
Deputies found the vehicle “driving reckless through medians while speeding” a short time later and attempted a traffic stop, but Loehner took off and drove over another media into oncoming traffic. before turning into shopping center.
Loehner drove into a McDonald’s parking lot and got out of his vehicle near the drive-thru — carrying the boy in his arms, “using the child as a human shield and refusing to obey law enforcement commands to to put the child down,” the sheriff’s office said.
Deputies hit Loehner with a taser after a brief standoff and rescued the child. As deputies comforted the toddler, Loehner tried to flee and resist until a K-9 and another taser brought him under control. He was handcuffed, and paramedics treated his wounds from the dog.
“Here is a case of a domestic situation turning violent, putting a 1-year-old child and innocent drivers in danger,” said Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly. “Deputies were confronted with a very chaotic situation and a very combative individual that was putting his child at risk by using the child as a shield. Our deputies did everything they could to quickly rescue this child safely from a madman and apprehend the suspect. Fortunately, the child was not hurt and was quickly reunited with his mother.”
Loehner was charged with kidnapping, using a minor as a shield, resisting with violence, child neglect, fleeing and eluding, and reckless driving. He was taken to a hospital for treatment of his injuries and was booked into the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility when he was released.
For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast.
[Featured image: Screenshot from Flagler County Sheriff’s Office video]