Deputy cleared in July shooting in Gilchrist standoff


Published: Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 7:50 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 7:50 p.m.

An Alachua County sheriff’s deputy who fatally shot a man during a July standoff in Gilchrist County was cleared Tuesday by a grand jury.

On July 21, the Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office called in the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team to address 26-year-old Jay Donald Stankovich, who was reportedly disturbed and armed with a stolen gun.

Stankovich, who also had warrants in Duval County for aggravated battery, barricaded himself inside a Gilchrist County home. After hours of negotiations, Stankovich walked outside, pointed his gun at Alachua SWAT team members and was then fatally wounded.

On Tuesday night, State Attorney Bill Cervone said a Gilchrist County grand jury cleared the deputy of wrongdoing.

“This case is another example of when you have individuals with serious mental health problems who come in contact with the law enforcement community,” Cervone said. “No good comes of it.”

The grand jury assembled at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, heard from several witnesses before going into a short deliberation period and was dismissed at 4:30 p.m.

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