HOLLY HILL, Fla. - Holly Hill police said they are investigating if alcohol was involved in the case of a man who shot and killed his roommate over how to prepare pork chops.
Police said they arrested Thomas Mathew Hahn Jr., 55, on charges of killing his roommate, Robert Gray.
Gray arrived at the May Avenue home he shared with Hahn and two other roommates at about 10 p.m Tuesday, police said. They said the roommates were home at the time of the shooting.
According to authorities, Hahn and Gray began arguing over the meal when Hahn retrieved the rifle from his bedroom, walked into the living room and fired at least three rounds, two of which struck Gray in the head, killing him instantly.
At 10:27 p.m. Tuesday, police responded to a 911 emergency call of a reported shooting at the May Avenue home.
"He's bleeding. He's shot in the head," said one of the roommates.
"He's shot in the head?" asked the 911 operator.
"Yeah," the roommate said.
Officers said they found the 35-year-old man dead in the living room of the home, with Hahn seated in a chair nearby.
"Frankly, I was expecting something like that to happen with all of the people he had going in and out of his house for the last few years or longer. We always suspected that it would be him who got killed," said neighbor Cheryl Seltzer, regarding Gray.
Police said Hahn, who faced a judge in first appearance, and his victim, Gray, had a history of not getting along. A police report shows Hahn told his two other roommates last night that he would shoot Gray if he came home drunk. Roommates say he even loaded his .22-caliber rifle with three bullets and said, “That should be enough.”
Police said the weapon used in the slaying, a .22-caliber Ruger rifle, was recovered from Hahn's bedroom.
Hahn originally claimed the shooting was in self-defense, and told police Gray did not hit him but he “did not want to be attacked anymore.”
However, investigators said witnesses told them that there was no apparent struggle or other direct threat to Hahn at the time of the shooting.
Investigators said evidence does not support a claim of self-defense, but they are looking at all aspects of this case.
"This appears to be a senseless act of violence stemming from a minor domestic dispute between roommates," said Holly Hill Police Chief Mark Barker.
Hahn was charged with one count of second-degree murder and is being held without bail at the Volusia County Branch Jail.
Additional charges are pending, police said.
Gray had previous alcohol-related violations.
Hahn is in jail with no bond, but Hahn's public defender said because Hahn does not have a history, there's a chance a judge could grant him bond at a later date.