Deputy-Involved Shooting Investigation (UPDATE)

NEWS RELEASE 23-057 - OCTOBER 10, 2023

Following the investigation of a deputy-involved shooting, the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) has reopened Webber Street between South Shade Avenue and South Tamiami Trail.

Investigators have identified Michael Bajorek (DOB 3/24/91) as the driver and sole occupant of the 2009 gray Honda Civic who led deputies on a low-speed vehicle pursuit from the area of South Tamiami Trail and Phillippi Street to Shade Avenue near Rose Street. Deputies initiated a Precision Immobilization Technique (PIT) maneuver to immobilize the suspect’s vehicle. As the car came to a rest, a deputy exited the marked patrol vehicle and attempted to approach the suspect on foot. The suspect suddenly drove at the deputy, pinning the deputy between the suspect’s vehicle and the patrol vehicle. The deputy sustained leg and wrist injuries and was transported to Sarasota Memorial Hospital for treatment.

The suspect continued north on Shade Avenue, turning west on Webber Street and ultimately onto Lime Avenue. Believing the suspect was stopping, deputies exited their vehicles to conduct a felony stop. The suspect then turned around and drove at them, causing a deputy to discharge their firearm, striking the suspect through the vehicle. The suspect’s vehicle continued across Webber and came to rest against a tree behind a nearby residence. Deputies quickly located the driver and attempted life-saving measures with the help of the Sarasota County Fire Department (SCFD); however, the suspect was pronounced deceased at the scene. No other persons were injured, and this incident remains under investigation.