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August 29, 2002

TO: Trooper Brett A. McCranie
FROM: Colonel Christopher A. Knight
SUBJECT: Commendation

You are commended for your actions that led to the arrest of Daniel Meade for three counts of shooting into an occupied vehicle and three counts of attempted murder; and for the arrest of Stephanie Mungin for being an accessory in the first degree and tampering with evidence.

On August 17, 2002, at approximately 7:00 P.M., Duty Officer Brook Warren received a phone call from a victim of a road rage incident. Sean and Sherry Gaskin, along with their three-year-old daughter, were eastbound on Interstate 4 near State Road 557, when their vehicle was shot three times by a passing motorist.

The Gaskin’s Pontiac Grand Am had been in the left lane of Interstate 4 when a Nissan Pathfinder, driven by Daniel Meade, pulled up behind them. Meade flashed his vehicle’s headlights, but Gaskin was unable to change lanes because traffic was too heavy. Meade was then able to pull alongside the Grand Am where he yelled at the Gaskin family and made obscene gestures.

Gaskin pulled off the interstate at County Road 557, where he thought he was safe. Meade also pulled off the interstate, and alongside the Gaskin family, where he fired three shots at the vehicle. Meade then sped away and turned back onto the westbound lanes of Interstate 4, at which time Gaskin decided to follow him.

As Gaskin followed the Pathfinder, which was weaving through traffic, the Gaskins described the shooting and chase to Duty Officer Warren, who relayed the information to you and all other available troopers. Gaskins followed Meade as he went in and out of a rest area, exited onto the Polk Parkway, drove past toll collection booths without stopping, and continued south. About two miles later, Meade drove through the median, reversed course and traveled back north on the Polk Parkway back toward Interstate 4.

At this point, you observed the vehicle, called for backup, and pursued it off of Interstate 4 onto State Road 559 southbound. Approximately three miles south of Interstate 4, you stopped the vehicle, with assistance from Sergeant Ronald Brannan and the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, and made the arrests without incident.

You are commended for your expedient and professional actions that resulted in these arrests. Keep up the good work!


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