Homeowner shoots, kills burglary suspect in Lake County, deputies say

4 break-ins reported at Eustis area home in 24 hours

EUSTIS, Fla. – A homeowner shot and killed a burglary suspect Tuesday morning in Lake County during the fourth break-in at his home in the last 24 hours, sheriff's officials said.

The Lake County Sheriff's Office said deputies were called just before 5 a.m. about a report of a burglary in progress on Dee Street in the Pine Lakes area of Eustis. 

"We responded out (Monday) night around midnight when the property owner noticed that his property had been burglarized actually for the third time yesterday," Lake County sheriff's Lt. John Herrell said. "Obviously, he knew something was going on. Someone was on his property and trying to steal some things."

Herrell said the homeowner found the man on his property after he apparently heard voices outside. There was a struggle, and the homeowner shot and killed the man, deputies said.

Deputies later identified the burglary suspect as 27-year-old Brandon Allen Woods. Authorities said he had been a suspect in a string of burglaries in the area.

Donald Goodall said he knew Woods, and that his father even helped Woods get back on his feet. 

"He got a good heart, but the drugs got a hold of him and he went down hill," Gooddall said. 

Marcie Powers said unfortunately, she was expecting something like this to happen, especially after reports of recent break-ins. 

"I’m not surprised. I figured it would happen eventually. People are getting tired of being robbed," Powers said. "It's unfortunate. I'm going to miss him." 

News 6 found court records from Lake County showing that Woods was arrested on drug charges in April of last year. Records from 2009 showed Woods was arrested on battery and burglary charges.

The homeowner was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, deputies said. Deputies said they won't pursue charges against him because the shooting appeared to be in self-defense.

According to sheriff's office officials, there were three previous burglaries at the home over the last 24 hours.

"We hope that it will lead us to a conclusion to the recent burglaries that have been reported and, hopefully, we would love to recover any property that was stolen," Herrell said.

The homeowner has since been released from the hospital.   

Watch News 6 and stay with ClickOrlando.com for updates.

About the Authors: