On Monday, Jan. 13, a retired police officer shot a man in a Florida movie theater because he was texting. This was not the typical movie theatre shooting that we as a public have become familiar with. The shooter was a 71 year old retired police officer. The victim was a father texting during the previews.
According to various witnesses at the movie theatre that day, what had started out as an argument over cell phone use escalated to a shooting.
The shooter, Curtis Reeves, left to report the texting to the manager of the theater, after arguing with the victim about his cell phone use. When he returned, he seemed “very irritated,” according to Cummings, a bystander. Upon Reeves’ return, Oulson, the victim, stood and asked Reeves if he had “told on him.” He was “just sending a [text] message to his young daughter,” Oulson continued.
A minute later, after more arguing, Reeves pulled out a hand gun. Oulson was fatally wounded, while his wife had a minor wound in her hand from attempting to protect her husband when the gun was drawn.
Reportedly, immediately after firing the shot, Reeves sat back down and placed the gun in his lap.
Two nurses, who were in the theatre at the time, rushed to help Oulson and performed CPR. He later died in the hospital while Reeves was arrested with the charge of second degree homicide.
On Tuesday, Reeves made his first court appearance. His attorney attempted to argue that this was a case of “stand your ground.” He claimed that Reeves felt Oulson was going to attack him, and the shooter “feared for his safety.” Reeves reported to the police that Oulson had thrown popcorn at him. The attorney stated that this was an “attack” and the victim “struck Reeves with an object” which was the result of the gun fire.
The prosecution responded that witnesses said they never saw any popcorn thrown, or saw the victim threaten or hit Reeves.
The court found that there was more than sufficient probable cause for second degree murder.