Florida deputy stabbed in the head by 14-year-old in Punta Gorda, sheriff says

A Charlotte County deputy is recovering after being stabbed multiple times in the head by a teenager in Punta Gorda, authorities said.

The incident happened around 2 a.m. Thursday in the Babcock Ranch community, where the deputy was patrolling the area to enforce the county's curfew put in place after Hurricane Ian.

The deputy spotted a "suspicious juvenile" who investigators said was riding a bicycle around The Lake House Kitchen and Grill. He claimed he was fishing in the area, but the sheriff's office said he had no fishing equipment.

When the deputy attempted to stop him, the teen tried to walk away, then turned around and hit the deputy on the top of the head. The blow caused injury and "substantial bleeding," the sheriff's office said.

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As the deputy tried to call for backup with a radio, a struggle ensued. That's when investigators said the teen stabbed the deputy behind the ear with a pocketknife.

The sheriff's office said the deputy was stabbed a total of six times.

Despite being injured, the deputy was able to taser and secure the suspect while backup arrived, investigators said.

The deputy was then airlifted to an area hospital for treatment, and is currently in stable condition recovering at home.

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The sheriff's office said the suspect was identified as a 14-year-old resident of Babcock Ranch. In addition to his pocket knife, the teen was also reportedly wearing gloves and had a hammer in his backpack.

When speaking with investigators, the teen said he had planned to break into closed restaurants in the area.

"Please pray for all members as they patrol our community during this stressful time," the sheriff's office wrote.