In an incident that unfolded on June 4, 2023, Palatka Police Department officers had been dispatched to 6710 St. Johns Avenue following a report of a taking pictures. The chaotic sequence of occasions that ensued would finally result in the arrest of Semaj Atkins, 21, of Gainesville, FL.
Upon arrival on the scene, officers made contact with Phillip Bryant, 31, a resident of Palatka, who confessed to firing pictures at Atkins. Bryant recounted the terrifying moments when Atkins, armed with a pistol, approached his entrance door and pointed the firearm immediately at him. In a swift response, Bryant managed to deflect the gun and safe himself inside his condominium, all of the whereas fearing for his and his kids’s security.
As Bryant retrieved his personal firearm, an AR-15, he heard gunshots and shortly responded by discharging his weapon towards the entrance door. The state of affairs escalated when Atkins shot at Bryant’s bed room window, prompting Bryant to return hearth as soon as once more earlier than Atkins fled the scene. Bryant believed the confrontation stemmed from an argument earlier that day. Investigators later recovered a number of 5.56 and 9mm shell casings from each inside and out of doors the residence, and Bryant’s AR-15 was taken in for processing.
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In a fast response, a Deputy from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Workplace positioned and stopped Atkins’ car. Inside, Atkins was discovered affected by a gunshot wound to his higher left torso and was instantly transported to an area hospital for remedy. The car and a 9mm handgun, together with ammunition, had been secured for proof processing.
Throughout a subsequent interview, Atkins admitted to visiting Bryant’s residence however claimed he had left the 9mm handgun within the car and denied firing any pictures. This assertion was contradicted by the invention of spent 9mm shell casings exterior the condominium.
All collected proof was despatched to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) for ballistics processing. On October 10, 2023, FDLE’s report confirmed the 9mm shell casings matched the handgun in Atkins’ possession, whereas the 5.56 casings matched Bryant’s firearm. This important piece of proof validated Bryant’s account of the incident, framing his actions as self-defense.
Following the investigation’s conclusion, a warrant for Atkins’ arrest was issued, charging him with one depend of aggravated assault and one depend of firing a missile right into a dwelling. On October 25, 2023, Atkins surrendered himself to the Putnam County Jail, the place he’s being held with out bond.
This intense and harmful confrontation at St. Johns Avenue highlights the grave dangers posed by armed confrontations and the important position of fast police response and thorough investigation. The incident additionally underscores the significance of ballistics testing in verifying eyewitness accounts and guaranteeing that justice is served. At this time, the neighborhood can discover solace within the decision of this case and the steadfast dedication of native regulation enforcement to uphold security and order.
Police in Palatka, FL, introduced at this time that after reviewing the proof from a June 4 alternate of gunfire, they’ve confirmed a home-owner’s declare that he used his AR-15 to lawfully defend himself and his household in opposition to an armed gunman who shot first. https://t.co/IpI6JZg0vA
— Defensive Gun Use Tracker (@DailyDGU) October 25, 2023
By Duncan Johnson and AI instruments.
Homeowner Lawfully Uses AR-15 to Stop Armed Attacker is written by AmmoLand Editor Duncan Johnson for www.ammoland.com