Carjacking suspect dead, deputy grazed by bullet after pursuit and exchange of gunfire

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A carjacking suspect has died after being shot in an exchange of gunfire with law enforcement officers following a pursuit late Thursday afternoon.

A Volusia County sheriff's deputy was also injured, moments after the suspect was stopped along State Road 44, near DeLand.

"It started earlier in the day in Deltona, with a carjacking," explained Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood. "When deputies tried to stop the car in Deltona, he [the suspect] tried to ram them and pointed a firearm at them, and the chase was on."

Chitwood said deputies followed the suspect for several miles before deploying stopsticks on State Road 44, near Interstate 4, which flattened all four tires of the truck that was allegedly stolen. 

"As the vehicle was coming to a stop here, the bad guy jumps out of the car -- gun to his head -- and runs directly towards a black SUV, where he's going to try to carjack it."

The sheriff said one of the deputies attempted to stop the suspect, who then began to charge at the law enforcement officers.

"There are probably 10 to 12 of us, and he engages us in a gun battle," Chitwood said.

The deputy who was injured, identified as 54-year-old Sgt. Tommy Dane, sustained a grazing gunshot wound to the head, the sheriff said. The suspect, identified as 30-year-old Phillip Thomas Marsh, of Lake Helen, fled into some nearby woods but was apprehended and transported to Halifax Health, where he later died.  

Authorities said that Marsh had been reported missing and suicidal earlier this week, and at the time, it was noted he was known to act violently toward law enforcement.

"I couldn't be prouder of the deputies," Chitwood added. "I was in the middle of this and saw everything that went down."


This story is developing, please check back for updates.