Deputies Cleared in Deadly Shooting at Kissimmee Target, Family Files Lawsuit

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Two deputies with the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office will not be facing charges for their involvement in a fatal shooting that took place in April 2022, according to State Attorney Andrew Bain. The shooting resulted in the death of Jayden Baez, who was suspected of shoplifting from a Target store.

Baez’s family filed a lawsuit against the sheriff and the two deputies in May 2023, alleging that excessive force was used and that the sheriff’s office falsified reports about the incident. The lawsuit is still ongoing and has brought attention to the use of force policies within the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office.

The shooting occurred in the parking lot of a Kissimmee Target, where Baez was fatally shot and another person was injured. The deputies opened fire on the suspects, who had allegedly shoplifted approximately $46 worth of items from the store. Despite the grand jury’s decision not to file charges against the deputies, the case has sparked controversy and raised questions about law enforcement’s use of force.

Attorney Mark NeJame, representing the Baez family, expressed concerns about the use of force during the incident, pointing out the presence of a passenger in the car at the time of the shooting. NeJame also noted the historical difficulty of indicting law enforcement officers and highlighted the importance of the grand jury’s statement for the ongoing civil lawsuit.

The decision not to press charges has raised concerns within the community, prompting Osceola County Sheriff Marcos Lopez to schedule a press conference to address the issue. The outcome of the shooting has left many families and individuals grieving, emphasizing the impact of such incidents on the community.

The tragic events of the shooting in Kissimmee have prompted discussions about law enforcement policies and the use of force protocols within the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office. As the lawsuit continues, the community awaits further developments in the case.