Sheriff: Palm Coast man arrested after kidnapping child to use as human shield

Brandon Matthew Douglas Leohner used his girlfriend's 1-year-old child as a human shield after fleeing deputies, according to the Flagler County Sheriff's Office.
A Palm Coast man abducted and used a 1-year-old child as a human shield in an altercation with deputies outside a McDonald's before the deputies rescued the boy and arrested the man, according to a press release from the Flagler County Sheriff's Office.
Brandon Matthew Douglas Leohner, 27, has been charged with kidnapping a minor for ransom, hostage or shield; to resist by force; child neglect; fleeing and fleeing/disregarding the safety of others; and reckless driving.
ADVERTISEMENT
Leohner will be arraigned on October 31 before District Judge Terence Perkins in Bunnell.
Lohner was being held on $31,000 bail in the Flagler County Jail on Wednesday.
Deputies responded around 6 p.m. on the Belle Terre Parkway and Eastwood Drive area. on September 27, when the child's mother informed them that her boyfriend had left with her son, a report said. She also told headquarters that Leohner was known to be armed with a gun.
Leohner had become paranoid and claimed he had been "framed," the report said. The mother said he grabbed her son during his paranoia, the report said. She said she fought with him about the child but he was able to take it away, the report said.
ADVERTISEMENT
A detective spotted Leohner traveling south on the Belle Terre Parkway at about 80 miles per hour in a 45-mile zone and running three red lights, the report said. The child was on Leohner's lap and was reportedly unbuckled.
Allegations of video voyeurism: The President of the Flagler County condominium faces further allegations of video voyeurism, according to the sheriff's office
Man accused of sex with girl: Palm Coast man used Snapchat to find underage girl and have sex with her, Flagler Sheriff says
Ormond Beach Man Dies: FHP: Ormond Beach man dies in Flagler County roundabout accident
After making a few U-turns and forcing vehicles to swerve to avoid a crash, Leohner headed east on State Road 100, crossing the median and through oncoming traffic before entering the Target mall and McDonald's parking lot according to a press release.
ADVERTISEMENT
Leohner got out of the car in the through lane with the child in his arms and held the child in front of him like a human shield, the press release said.
According to law enforcement officials, Lohner refused to release the child.
Deputies then tasered Lohner, who fell to the ground, and one deputy quickly grabbed the child, video showed. A deputy comforted the child as several others tried to arrest Leohner, the video showed.
According to the video, the child said "Dadda" as Leohner ran into the parking lot with deputies chasing him.
Leohner was eventually restrained at the property when deputies held him down and a K-9 bit his leg, according to the video.
ADVERTISEMENT
Leohner was handcuffed and taken to AdventHealth Palm Coast for treatment of his injuries, the press release said.
"Here is a case of a domestic situation that turns violent and puts a 1-year-old child and innocent drivers at risk," Sheriff Rick Staly said in the press release. “MPs were faced with a very chaotic situation and a very combative individual who was putting his child at risk by using the child as a human shield.
"Our deputies did everything to quickly and safely save this child from a madman and arrested the suspect," Staly continued. "Fortunately, the child was not injured and was quickly reunited with his mother."
This article originally appeared in the Daytona Beach News-Journal: Florida man accused of kidnapping using child as human shield

Last News

Sen. Raphael Warnock Is Finally Going for the Jugular in Georgia Senate Battle

Sen. Raphael Warnock Is Finally Going for the Jugular in Georgia Senate Battle

Japan court rules same-sex marriage ban constitutional

5 cars Joe Biden's Secret Service rented in Nantucket burst into flames a day after they were returned: report

5 cars Joe Biden's Secret Service rented in Nantucket burst into flames a day after they were returned: report

This South Korean Football Player Has Gone Viral After His 2022 FIFA World Cup Appearance