Police shootout in Florida sends people scrambling for cover

That gun battle played out in a shopping plaza in the heart of the tourist district, and at least one mother with her young children were close by.

People in the shopping plaza near Grand National Boulevard said they heard at least a dozen shots.

The shooting happened at about 1 p.m. at a small strip mall on I-Drive near Kirkman Road.

Isabella Birnardes said she was cleaning up in a nearby bakery when she heard seven gunshots.

“Everyone runs to the kitchen and got down like this, and I heard five more shots,” said Birnardes.

Birnardes said her friend's mother came running in screaming and begging for help because her children were in the car outside.

“She sees the man enter the tattoo (shop) and shoot, so she ran to be helped,” Birnardes said.

A witness said a police officer exchanged fire with gunman in a white Chrysler sedan.

WFTV reporter Kathi Belich saw the Chrysler about a mile away in the Tangelo Park area, with at least one bullet hole.

Police said a shooting victim was found in that area, and at least one person was taken into custody.

“(It’s) scary because you don't know, maybe it's you, or your family. Never safe. I don't feel safe here,” said Birnardes.

Orlando investigators said they are waiting for a warrant to search the Chrysler.

Police said the man who was shot did not want to press charges.

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