Two deputies were hospitalized after a motorist intentional targets them with vehicle

TAMPA, FL – Two deputies from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office in Florida were severely injured after a man deliberately drove his vehicle into them, according to authorities. The incident occurred as Cpl. Carlos Brito, 39, and Deputy Manny Santos, 31, responded to a distress call from a woman claiming her adult son was exhibiting violent behavior.

The suspect, identified as 28-year-old Ralph Bouzy, initially fled the scene when the deputies attempted to approach him. However, he returned shortly after, accelerating his vehicle towards the officers and trapping them against their patrol car. Home security footage released by the sheriff’s office captured the incident. Bouzy was subsequently subdued with a taser and taken into custody.

Both deputies sustained critical leg injuries in the attack but are expected to recover. Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister indicated that one of the officers might face leg amputation due to the severity of his injuries. He characterized the incident as an “ambush,” stating that Bouzy used his car as a weapon against the unsuspecting deputies.

In response to the incident, the sheriff’s office launched a fundraising initiative on Friday to assist Cpl. Brito and Deputy Santos with their recovery. The funds collected through the Lynn Sowers Memorial Foundation will be used to cover medical costs, rehabilitation, and additional support for the deputies and their families.

Bouzy, who has a criminal record including three felonies and 14 misdemeanors, was charged with attempted murder of law enforcement officers. Sheriff Chronister noted that Bouzy had previously demonstrated animosity towards law enforcement, even threatening to kill a deputy following a 2017 hit-and-run arrest.