Panama City, FL — One elderly Florida man is safe at home with his wife today after a violent altercation with a stranger ended in gunfire.
The unnamed resident called police around 5:45 on Tuesday night to tell them there had been a shooting in his home. When police arrived at 6:05, they found 31-year-old Nathan Jerrell Edwards lying dead on the floor. The homeowner’s gun was on the kitchen counter.
The Bay County Sheriff’s Department officers recounted what lead up to the shooting.
The homeowner was standing outside when Edwards — a stranger — walked up to his driveway and “approached him in a threatening manner.”
Nearby eyewitnesses told the police that Edwards was “acting erratically,” screaming and swearing. The homeowner retreated into his home through the garage to avoid Edwards.
Edwards was undeterred. He came up to the house and pounded on the front door until he shattered the large glass panel.
The homeowner recognized that at 70 years old, he wasn’t going to be able to stop the much younger man without help.
“The husband stated he felt he could not physically stop the intruder, so he went upstairs to get his firearm.”
When he returned downstairs, Edwards had made it into the house and knocked the homeowner’s wife to the ground. Edwards had straddled her and was beating her on the head.
That’s when the husband shot Edwards. Deputies said, “He shot the firearm multiple times, ending the threat.”
Edwards was pronounced dead at the scene. The homeowner’s wife was taken to the hospital where she was treated for her injuries. They aren’t likely to face any charges.
The local police said that Edwards lived in Georgia, but was staying in the neighborhood at a short term rental.
The Great Equalizer
When you’re not the youngest or the strongest anymore, it’s wise to have a gun. For elderly relatives — who often live a distance from family — a handgun can mean the difference between a home invasion turning into a double homicide or turning into a ten second news story like this one.
Good for this guy. He defended his home and his wife like a man and lived to tell the tale. And hopefully this story will be a caution to lunatics who think that mixing drugs or drinking or whatever it is that tripped Edwards’ trigger is a bad idea.