A Florida man who defended his home with an “AK-47 style” weapon will not face charges, said Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons in a press briefing on Wednesday.
The homeowner, who fired his weapon at suspected home invaders “started shooting for his own protection, to get them out of his house and to protect himself,” said the sheriff.
According to Simmons, the homeowner, who remains unnamed, was confronted by three assailants, including one who was armed with a gun, who forced their way into his home before midnight on July 7.
The homeowner was present when the three intruders broke into his house, and pulled out a handgun from his waistband to defend himself, which he dropped. He was able to retrieve another gun, which the sheriff describes as an “AK-47 style gun,” while one of the three suspects picked up his handgun.
The homeowner was able to fire off a few shots at the suspects before they fled the house, the sheriff said.
In his press conference, which was shared on the Escambia County Sheriff Department’s official Facebook page, the sheriff said that police have identified two of the suspects. Police also discovered a third man not long after who suffered a non-fatal gunshot wound to the head.
“We get a report of a third individual that had a wound to the head not long after [the home invasion],” said the sheriff. “The stories he’s giving us as to how he got shot in the head are inconsistent at best. In short, we don’t believe him. So what we’re looking at is to determine whether this is the third person that was involved.”
The two suspects were identified as Antonio DeWayne Dean Jr., 18, and Da’Torrance Leanders Hackworth, 20, the latter of whom has since been arrested.
Dean, who remains at large, has a number of active warrants against him, including carjacking, aggravated assaults with a firearm, robbery with a firearm and domestic violence battery, the sheriff said.
Simmons concluded his remarks by saying that the homeowner who defended himself will “absolutely not” face charges for shooting at the three suspects.
“The homeowner’s protecting himself. And in Florida, in Escambia County, you can protect yourself,” he said.