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PA Bill Number: HB2473

Title: In returns of primaries and elections, further providing for appeals to court from decisions of the county board and for Secretary of the ...

Description: In returns of primaries and elections, further providing for appeals to court from decisions of the county board and for Secretary of the ... ...

Last Action: Referred to STATE GOVERNMENT

Last Action Date: Jul 12, 2024

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Florida Self Defense: Milton man arrested in Pace home invasion spree; homeowner offered shooting lessons :: 04/21/2022

A Milton man was arrested after a Pace home burglary spree early Wednesday evening, Santa Rosa County Sherriff Bob Johnson said in a press conference Thursday morning.

Brandon J. Harris, 32, was caught fleeing from deputies on Tom Sawyer Road after allegedly breaking into several Pace homes in the Santa Villa subdivision. During the string of quick break-ins, calls started coming into the Sheriff's Office at about 4:30 p.m. reporting Harris as a suspicious person.

One of the homeowners victimized in the break-ins fired multiple gunshots at about 5:12 p.m., but there were no reported injuries. Police arrested Harris about 10 minutes later, according to the sheriff.

"Probably 20 deputies get there, the dogs are out, and he's jumping fences and breaking into houses as he goes," he said. "One of the homeowners, he was breaking into their house, and they shot at him. So he continues to run, we finally corner him in a house that he broke into on Tom Sawyer and we cornered him in a bedroom."

Johnson said the homeowner who shot at Harris would not faces charges, and encouraged other residents to follow the shooter's example.

"I guess they think they did something wrong, which they did not. If someone's breaking into your house, you're more than welcome to shoot them in Santa Rosa County. We prefer that you do, actually. So, whoever that was, you're not in trouble, come see us. We have a gun safety class we put on every other Saturday. If you take that, you'll shoot a lot better, and hopefully you'll save the taxpayers money."

Johnson indicated during the press conference that Harris had a long history of run ins with the law. 

"You hear me talk about frequent flyers all the time. Our first interaction with this individual came when he was 13 years old. Since then, he's had like 17 arrests," Johnson said. "We sent him to prison for six and a half years for home invasion, and he just can't seem to get the picture of crime does not pay."

Johnson proceeded to show surveillance of Harris barricading the door to a bedroom that he was hiding inside of, proceeding to jump out of the window headfirst, shattering the glass. Deputies then captured him in the backyard and made the arrest.

New charges filed following Wednesday's events include one count of attempted burglary with assault, one count resisting arrest without violence, two counts of burglary to an occupied dwelling, one count of criminal mischief, one county of attempted larceny and one count of burglary to an unoccupied dwelling.

Harris had pre-existing charges of aggravated assault, battery and violation of probation. Harris is also registered as a high-risk sex offender. His bond is set at $157,500.

Johnson praised the quick response of deputies in the incident.

"They set up a perimeter really quick, closed it in as they found locations on him, then finally caught him on Tom Sawyer. So it was a great job by the deputies," Johnson said.