HERNANDO, Fla. (FOX 13) - A murder suspect is dead after leading police on a chase spanning more than 25 miles and two counties.
The man was accused of killing the boyfriend of his ex-wife.
Deputies say 70-year-old Salvatore Tirone shot and killed his ex-wife's boyfriend, 64-year-old Michael Quirello out of jealousy. According to deputies, he drove all the way from Miami to a Quality Inn in Citrus County with the intent to kill Quirello.
Tirone eventually led officers on a chase that ended when the suspect was shot dead on I-75 in Sumter County.
It appears SWAT officers shot and killed Tirone, who was suspected of being an "armed and dangerous" murderer.
Citrus County Sheriff Mike Prendergast said Quirello was apparently changing a tire on his car, in the Quality Inn parking lot, when he was shot and killed by Tirone. A good Samaritan with a concealed carry permit who witnessed the shooting returned fire.
Tirone sped away in his Mercedes SUV, leading police on a chase across county lines.
"There were hundreds of lives put at risk out there," Prendergast said. "He elected not to comply with law enforcement. We could have stopped it right here. We were trying to get him to pull over but he didn't."
A Florida Highway Patrol trooper pitted the suspect's car, eventually causing it to flip several times.
SWAT officers arrived and demanded Tirone surrender, but instead he opened fire and was shot and killed.
"We were able to take the left front of our vehicle and tap the right rear of our vehicle. He spun into a circle and flipped over into the median," Captain Tony Prevatt, with the Sumter County Sheriff's Office said.
The sheriff's office is now trying to figure out whether Tirone slashed Quirello's tire as a ploy to get him outside, within range to shot him.
"It is suspicious in nature that one of the tires was flat," Prendergast said. "And he goes out there and puts his back to the field behind me where the trees are the tree line is and so potentially anything is possible."
Tirone's ex-wife was not harmed in the shooting.
Six deputies fired their weapons and have been placed on paid administrative leave as part of departmental protocol. The shooting remains under investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.