Friday, June 14, 2024

Fla. Pushes More Freedom for Gun-owners, as Police Chief Warns Home-Invaders of ‘Repercussions’

'Our law-abiding citizens have that immediate right, guarantee and freedom to protect themselves... '

(Mark Pellin, Headline USA) Following in the wake of Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis unveiling new tough-on-crime legislation, a Florida police chief issued a warning to criminals who make the mistake of plying their trade in the state.

“One should expect that if you are brazen enough to enter into someone’s residence and it is not yours, with intent to commit an unlawful act, there may be repercussions,” Haines City Police Chief Gregory Goreck said in a Friday press conference, after a homeowner defended himself against a pair of alleged thieves and thugs.

“We live in Florida, and more so, we live in Polk County, and most people are armed,” Goreck said. “It’s probably the logical conclusion, if you break into somebody’s house, you might end up getting shot by the homeowner

A criminal recidivist with a lengthy rap sheet learned that sobering reality for himself, when he was shot by a homeowner during an attempted burglary with an accomplice.

The homeowner, who had a concealed weapon permit, arrived home with his girlfriend Friday night to discover two intruders burglarizing his residence, according to Goreck. The homeowner fired his gun, hitting one of the suspects as they fled the scene.

Florida Republican lawmakers on Monday introduced legislation that would provide more freedoms for law-abiding citizens by eliminating concealed weapons permits with a Constitutional Carry bill. The measure has support from DeSantis, along with a majority of Republicans who control the state legislature.

“What we’re about here today is a universal right that applies to each and every man or woman regardless of race, gender, creed or background,” Speaker Paul Renner said at a news conference.

Law enforcement agencies also endorsed the legislation.

“Criminals don’t get a permit. Not one of them. They don’t care about obeying the law,” said Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey. “Our law-abiding citizens have that immediate right, guarantee and freedom to protect themselves.”

That was the case for the homeowner defending himself in Polk County, authorities said. Police were able to use a canine unit to track the injured suspect and render medical aide before he was transported to a hospital.

“Even though this was a felon who had been illegally inside someone’s house, the officers immediately changed focus,” switching from search-and-find to saving life, Goreck said. One officer started to render first aid, “trying to apply direct pressure to at least one or two of his wounds. Seeing that due to the number of wounds, he was unable to do it himself, he summoned for additional officers” to help.

The suspect was taken to hospital, where he was listed in critical but non-life threatening condition, and charged with four counts burglary theft, four counts grand theft and narcotics charges. The alleged accomplice remained at-large.

Goreck said the case is still being investigated, including the shooting, but “based on the totality of the evidence, it appears to be a case of stand-your-ground.”

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