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Leon County deputies deploy a taser on a hatchet-wielding suspect

Blue and red lights on top of a police car
A man with a hatchet was tased by Leon County deputies Sunday.

A man suspected of stealing from a business on Capital Circle SW – and wielding a hatchet – was later tased by Leon County deputies. It started Sunday just after 12:30 p.m.

The vendor reported that the suspect walked away from the business heading west. A short time later, deputies saw a man matching the suspect’s description and holding a hatchet outside the Publix at Capital Circle SW and Crawfordville Highway.

John Rawls
Leon County Sheriff's Office
John Rawls

Deputies say after multiple commands, the suspect finally dropped the hatchet but would not move away from it. That resulted in him being tased twice. Deputies say he was taken into custody after a brief struggle and examined at the hospital as a precaution.

The suspect is identified as 42-year-old John Rawls. He’s facing charges of Aggravated Assault, Carrying a Concealed Weapon, and Resisting Arrest. The sheriff’s office says there could be additional charges.

Gina Jordan is the host of Morning Edition for WFSU News. Gina is a Tallahassee native and graduate of Florida State University. She spent 15 years working in news/talk and country radio in Orlando before becoming a reporter and All Things Considered host for WFSU in 2008. Follow Gina: @hearyourthought on Twitter. Click below for Gina's full bio.