TAMPA, Fla. – Director Alfredo “Freddy” Ramirez of the Miami-Dade Police Department shot himself in the head on a Florida highway during an argument with his wife, authorities said Monday.
The 52-year-old chief was in critical but stable condition after undergoing surgery, Miami-Dade Police officials said Monday morning, NBC Miami reported. The shooting occurred on Interstate 75 south of Tampa and is being investigated as a suicide attempt.
“The Director is in critical but stable condition. We are asking for everyone to continue to keep him and his family in your prayers during this difficult time,” Miami-Dade Police said in a statement.
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister confirmed Ramirez critically wounded himself on Sunday while trying to take his own life in Riverview following a domestic dispute at a Tampa hotel, WFLA reported.
Sheriff Chronister told local Tampa reporters, “He probably has a long road ahead, a lot of surgeries, but he is going to survive.”
Law enforcement personnel responded Sunday evening to the Florida Sheriff’s Association’s Summer Conference in Tampa where “a male had pointed a gun at himself,” police said in a statement, according to WFLA.
When officers arrived at the 12th floor of the Marriott Westside, Ramirez told them he was not a danger to himself or anyone else. He was then “released at the scene,” Tampa police said.
The encounter was described as a domestic dispute between Ramirez and his wife, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Not long after, Ramirez drove away from the hotel in the couple’s car and shot himself in the head, Sheriff Chronister confirmed.
Ramirez’s wife was present and was the person who called 911, NBC Miami reported, citing a law enforcement source.
FDLE and FHP are investigating an incident involving Miami-Dade Police Director Freddy Ramirez last night on I-75 South of Tampa. FDLE Agents and Troopers were on scene and will continue conducting investigative interviews today. Director Ramirez is hospitalized. Updates to come pic.twitter.com/JKFTXag1Zx
— FDLE (@fdlepio) July 24, 2023
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and Florida Highway Patrol are investigating the case.
“Our hearts are with Chief of Public Safety Freddy Ramirez and his family during this difficult time,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said, according to NBC News. “All that matters right now is his well-being and we continue to pray for his speedy recovery.”