LITHIA, Fla. — A pregnant Florida woman used a semi-automatic rifle to fatally shoot one of two men who allegedly broke into her home and pistol-whipped her husband in front of their 11-year-old daughter, authorities said.
According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, the home invasion occurred Wednesday at 9 p.m. in Lithia, a suburb 25 miles southeast of Tampa.
Jeremy King said two masked men with guns entered his residence, pointing guns at him and his daughter and demanding money, BayNews 9 reported.
“I’ve got a fractured eye socket, a fractured sinus cavity, a concussion, 20 stitches and three staples in my head,” King told the television station. “I took a severe beating.”
While King said he was being attacked, his wife, who is eight months pregnant, entered the room with an AR-15 and fatally shot one of the men, WFLA reported. The two men fled, but the man shot collapsed in a ditch and died, according to the Sheriff's Office.
"Two unknown males broke in and made demands of them. The male victim, who is the homeowner, began to get pistol-whipped and beat up," Hillsborough County Sheriff's Maj. Frank Losat told reporters. "During that incident, the female homeowner retrieved a firearm, which was in the house legally, and fired one round, which struck the male victim that was deceased in the ditch."
The other man has not been located, WFLA reported.
King told BayNews 9 his wife was in the back bedroom and peeked through the door when the men broke into the residence.
“When he came toward the back door in her line of sight, (my wife) clipped him,” King told the television station. “He made it from my back door to roughly 200 feet out in the front ditch before the AR did its thing.”
Deputies said they believed King and his family were targeted. King said he was grateful his wife reacted swiftly.
"Them guys came in with two normal pistols and my AR stopped it," King told BayNews 9. "(My wife) evened the playing field and kept them from killing me."
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Cox Media Group