ST. PETERSBURG — The FBI has identified the 68-year-old veteran who was shot to death by police after officials said he threatened them Friday night at Bay Pines VA Medical Center.
Officials say Vincent L. Young, 9261 48th Ave. N., St. Petersburg, drove to the medical center at 10000 Bay Pines Blvd. at about 5 p.m. Friday and walked into the lobby of the emergency room carrying a backpack.
Young said he had a bomb, and when police with the Department of Veterans Affairs confronted him, he brandished a knife and lunged at them, said Special Agent Dave Couvertier with the FBI.
The VA police officers shot and wounded Young, who lived in a neighborhood just across Bay Pines Boulevard from the medical center. He was treated at the hospital, but died there from his injuries.
The emergency room at the Bay Pines VA Medical Center reopened at 8 a.m. Saturday.
The FBI, which took over the investigation, has not confirmed how many officers fired at Young.
Disruptive behavior at the medical center happens, said Bay Pines spokesman Jason Dangel.
“There are instances where VA police have to intervene,” he said. “Sometimes there is pushing and shoving. There can be name calling. However, it is handled appropriately but this was an isolated incident.”
VA police responded within minutes, said Dangel, and took action to address the situation.
After the emergency room reopened, about a half-dozen people were in the waiting area. Richard Gould, 65, who served as an infantryman in the Vietnam War, was among them.
“I’m not worried about security issues here,” said the Largo man, who comes to the hospital regularly to receive treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.
“Anybody can walk in the door at any time,” Gould said.