A homeowner who reportedly used an AK-47-style gun to shoot at home invaders will “absolutely not” face charges, a Florida sheriff said last week.
According to the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, three men – including one who was armed with a handgun – attacked a homeowner on the 700-block of Pinestead Road on July 7.
“During this home invasion, the victim’s pistol fell to the ground and was picked up by one of the invaders. The victim ran to the back room of the house where he had another firearm and began firing at his intruders,” the sheriff’s office said in a July 13 statement posted on Facebook, along with security video of the incident.
The three home invaders “franticly” fled the scene, jumping into a vehicle driven by a fourth suspect, who hit a nearby mailbox as he drove off.
When asked if he believed the homeowner did anything wrong, Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons told Fox News, “Absolutely not. If protecting your family and yourself is wrong, then I don’t know what we’re here for … He did absolutely nothing wrong.”
“When we look at whether the actions of the homeowner are reasonable, we try to think about what we would do,” he continued. “And I can tell you that if someone breaks into my front door, barges in and attacks me or my family, they are going to get shot, and I afford that same consideration to the residents of my county.”
“I don’t think there’s anything else to do; you have got to protect family, you have to protect yourself. And you have to use whatever reasonable means you have available to you … His life was obviously in danger … he certainly did what I would do,” Simmons added.
The sheriff’s office identified three of the four suspects: Da’Torrance Hackworth, 20, and Antonio Dewayne Dean Jr., 18, and Joseph Roman Sanders, 18.
Hackworth and Dean Jr. were arrested and charged with use/display of a firearm during a felony, possession of a firearm by a felon, larceny, grand theft of a firearm, and robbery/home invasion with a firearm.
Sanders remains at large and is wanted for home invasion with a firearm. The sheriff’s office asked the public for help identifying the fourth individual involved in the home invasion.
“We need your help identifying the suspect circled in this surveillance video,” the sheriff’s office said. “If you have any information, please call Crime Stoppers at 850-433-STOP or the ECSO at 850-436-9620.”