JACKSONVILLE, Fla.- A burglary suspect is dead and another is one the run after a confrontation with a homeowner, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office says.
The homeowner was alerted to the burglary by his alarm system company around 11:40 a.m. Wednesday. Police were simultaneously contacted. The homeowner returned to the home in the 6000 block of Park Street on Jacksonville's Westside, arriving before police.
JSO Sgt. Steve Rudlaff said the homeowner confronted the two unknown intruders inside the home. The homeowner shot and killed one intruder, but the other got away on foot. Police are now searching for the suspect.
Police said they believe the suspects came to the home in a four-door silver car with its tag removed. Rudlaff said the deceased man was found inside the car in the driveway and police believe he was trying to flee the scene but died from the gunshot injuries.
The homeowner, who has not been identified, was questioned by authorities, but not taken into custody. Rudlaff was not able to confirm Wednesday whether the suspects were armed or unarmed during the confrontation.
First Coast News' crime and safety analyst Mark Baughman said the homeowner will likely avoid charges if he is able to show he felt his life was in jeopardy when he encountered the suspect.
"Whether [the suspect] was shot inside the car and whether he was shot inside the residence, [investigators] will be able to piece that together with blood spatter and blood trails," Baughman said. "If the suspect was still armed in the car, I don't think that it would matter [where the shooting happened.]"
Baughman said the suspect who escaped could face murder charges if prosecutors determine the death happened during the commission of crime by both suspects together.
"My safety recommendation is, if the police have been called and you happen to beat the police home, is there anything in the house worth your life?" Baughman said. "I would wait for police to arrive and do their job."
JSO crime statistics show three burglaries of unoccupied dwellings within a one-mile radius of this incident in the last four weeks.