Pregnant woman killed in SWAT raid; man used her as a human shield, police say
The family of 21-year-old Alteria Woods, an innocent woman who was shot and killed during a S.W.A.T. Team raid in Gifford, Florida, Sunday morning, said they are getting few answers from police.
Woods' aunt, Arlene Cooper, said it is hard coming to grips with her niece's death.
"I’ve never heard of this before. We don’t know what to do, no closure," Cooper said.
Woods was caught in the crossfire of the shootout. She was killed by Indian River County Sheriff’s deputies during the raid at the home, along 45th Street and 35th Avenue in Gifford.
"I was in shock," said Cooper. "Four months pregnant."
Cooper said the father of her niece’s baby was 23-year-old Andrew Coffee IV.
He and his father, Andrew Coffee III, were the targets of the raid.
Indian River County Sheriff Deryl Loar said the youngest Coffee used his girlfriend as a shield.
“Andrew Coffee IV cowardly was using her as protection,” Loar said.
But the sheriff also expressed remorse, calling Woods an innocent person, caught in the crossfire, as his deputies fired back the at Coffee IV who was shooting at deputies from a bedroom window.
“Today, we mourn the loss of Alteria Woods. My thoughts and prayers go to her family,” Loar continued.
The raid was ordered in response to the recent shootings that included the death of Deputy Garry Chambliss.
Sunday, dozens of demonstrators turned out along the scene on 45th Street and 35th Avenue calling for justice and peace between the black community and law enforcement.
“I feel justice haven’t been done in this community, and something needs to be done,” said Cooper.