Florida man charged with murder in bystander's death from police shot

Reuters News
Posted: Aug 26, 2014 4:53 PM

By Barbara Liston

ORLANDO Fla. (Reuters) - A Florida man was charged with murder on Tuesday in connection with a woman's death at an Orlando bar last week - even though a police officer fired the bullet that killed her, law enforcement officials said.

Police said the actions of Kody Roach, 23, resulted in the bystander's death on Aug. 19 from the stray shot and warranted a first-degree felony murder charge.

Under Florida law, a person can be charged with murder if a death occurs while a crime is being committed.

Roach was also arrested on charges of attempted armed burglary and armed trespassing of an occupied building and carrying a concealed weapon.

Maria Godinez, 22, died after officers were called to an Orlando bar, which had thrown out Roach for being armed and drunk. Roach then banged on the door with a gun trying to get back in, police said.

An officer fired at Roach nine times after unsuccessful attempts to subdue him, Orlando Police Chief John Mina said last week.

One of the bullets missed Roach and instead struck and killed Godinez, who was inside the bar with her friends.

Roach was hit five times, and another police officer on the scene was struck by a bullet that investigators believe ricocheted, according to an arrest affidavit.

Roach remained hospitalized for his wounds from the shooting, which is being investigated.

(Editing by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Sandra Maler)