OCALA, Fla. – A 19-year-old man on the autism spectrum was shot and killed while sitting on the front porch of a friend’s home in Ocala, and police said he “appears to be an innocent murder victim.”
Ocala police said Ferron Williams died in the shooting, which was reported around 11:20 p.m. Thursday near the 900 block of NW 6th Ave.
“Please send the police. I think someone just shot at my house. Oh my God, ma’am, I’m hiding in my closet with two infant babies,” said a 911 caller, who heard the shots in the area.
The woman on the 911 call can be heard telling the children with her to “come behind me” and “get in the laundry room now,” where they holed up after hearing “about 10″ shots fired.
Police said officers were called to the area and found Williams, who was on the autism spectrum, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. He was taken to a hospital, where he died early Friday, police said.
According to police, Williams was outside, sitting on the front porch of an acquaintance’s home to use the public Wi-Fi from a nearby Hardee’s restaurant.
Police said gunshots were fired, apparently from the road, striking Williams.
Authorities said Williams had not been in an altercation or disturbance.
An investigation is ongoing.
“We need the community’s help finding the person responsible for this young man’s death,” Ocala police said in a news release.
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call 352-369-7000 or submit an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers of Marion County at 352-368-STOP.