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‘He won’t be charged,’ sheriff says homeowner who used AK-47 against invaders is clear

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Mark Price

The Charlotte Observer

A Florida homeowner who opened fire on home intruders with an AK-47-style gun will not face charges, according to Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons.

“Is the homeowner going to be charged for shooting at these people? Absolutely not,” Simmons said at a news conference posted on the department’s Facebook page.

“The homeowner is protecting himself and, in Florida (and) in Escambia County, you can protect yourself.”

It happened around 9:30 p.m July 7 at a home just outside Pensacola.

Video released by the sheriff’s office shows three suspects — one carrying a gun — went to a home on Pinestead Road and passed themselves off as old acquaintances.

However, the homeowner was suspicious enough to answer the door while carrying a gun, officials said.

“When the victim unlocks the door, two of the males push him into the house and attack him. The third male pulls a handgun from his pants and waits outside,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release. “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.”

Eight seconds later, video shows the three suspects frantically running from the home as shots ring out.

They scramble to a vehicle in the driveway — where a fourth person was waiting — then speed away. In the process, the driver ran into a mailbox, the sheriff’s office said.

Three of the four suspects have been identified. A fourth person showed up later that night at a hospital with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to the head, and detectives are investigating whether that case is related, officials said.

Da’Torrance Hackworth, 20, and Antonio Dewayne Dean Jr., 18, have been 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,” the sheriff’s office said.

An 18-year-old remains wanted on a charge of home invasion with a firearm, officials said.

Investigators circled a fourth suspect in the video and are asking the community for help identifying him.

©2022 The Charlotte Observer. Visit charlotteobserver.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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