Delivery driver shoots, kills teen pizza thief

June 2, 2002

TAMPA, Fla. -- A pizza delivery driver who stopped to ask for directions to a home he was attempting to deliver to shot and killed a teen who stole his pizza.

According to the Tampa Tribune, the driver, Adel R. Ahmed, who works for Wings and Things in Tampa, stopped to ask for directions from Tyrone Stephens, 15, on May 31.

Ahmed told police that Stephens stalled and wouldn't give a clear answer, and then reached inside Ahmed's car, grabbed the pizza and fled on foot.

Still seated in his car, Ahmed said he became scared, pulled out his 9 mm handgun from a holster and shot twice, striking Stephens who was about 20 feet away, he said.

Stephens was hit in the lower back and died Friday night at St. Joseph's Hospital, the Tampa Police Department said.

Ahmed said he didn't shoot to kill.

"I think what I did was the proper thing," said Ahmed, 22. "I feared for my life. When I shot two shots, I thought I was going to get 100 shots back at me."

After the shooting, Ahmed returned to Wings and Things, where he called police. Ahmed has a gun permit and hasn't been charged, said police spokeswoman Katie Hughes. The case is under investigation,

Though Hughes said the delivery address Ahmed was looking for doesn't exist, she would not say Ahmed was given a bad address deliberately. "Maybe the driver misunderstood the address."

Ahmed disagrees. A regular customer called in the order and gave the address, he said.

Although the restaurant delivered to the Robles Park neighborhood, Ahmed never had taken food there. In the past, he had been in the area passing out business fliers, he said.

Ahmed, who said he was troubled by the shooting and Stephens' death, said the business no longer will deliver to Robles Park.

"Nobody is going to be happy that a 15-year old had to die," Ahmed said.

Topics: Crime

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