Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Burglary binge in Citrus, Hernando counties leaves one suspect dead

BROOKSVILLE — Johnathan Braden crossed paths twice with armed residents during a string of burglaries Tuesday, investigators say.

The first time, at a home on Flavian Road just south of the Citrus-Hernando line, Braden fled on foot with his accomplice.

Braden, 27, didn't survive the second encounter, three hours later and about a mile away.

About 1:45 p.m., Braden broke into a home on S Old Jones Road in Citrus County and got into a struggle with Theron Dunn, who lives on the property, according to the Citrus County Sheriff's Office. Dunn fatally shot Braden, investigators say.

Dunn, 37, didn't have a phone, so he posted a message on Facebook asking someone to call 911. Deputies arrived and found Braden of Crystal River dead at the scene.

Dunn has not been charged. The case will be turned over to the State Attorney's Office for review.

"All indications are that this was self-defense," said Citrus sheriff's spokeswoman Heather Yates.

The shooting brought a violent end to a brief run of burglaries by Braden and Timothy David Stone, 29, of Dunnellon, authorities said.

About 10:45 Tuesday morning, the Hernando Sheriff's Office received a call from the home of Matt and Bobbi Lynn Morgan.

Bobbi Lynn Morgan told deputies she heard a noise, looked outside and saw two men rummaging through belongings on the porch of their home at 16199 Flavian Road, a Hernando sheriff's reports state. Both men were dressed in camouflage. One was holding a knife and tried to open the front door.

Matt Morgan went to get his gun as his wife watched one of the men grab a pair of Nike sneakers and a duffel bag. When Matt Morgan returned with the gun, the men fled.

Neighbors in the rural, wooded area reported seeing men dressed in camouflage running through yards. Investigators say the two men burglarized a vehicle on Friendly Road before they separated.

Deputies found Stone near the intersection of Friendly and Spring Prairie roads. He admitted stealing the Nikes on his feet, deputies say. Deputies also found a knife in the nearby woods.

Meanwhile, Braden headed north, crossing a field and the county line, to 13347 S Old Jones Road. Dunn lives in an apartment on the property and his parents live in a separate house.

Dunn heard glass breaking at his parents' house, armed himself with a gun and went to investigate. He entered the home and found Braden pointing a gun he'd found in the house, deputies say.

Dunn convinced Braden to put the gun down and leave, but as Braden was walking out, deputies say, he punched Dunn in the face and started choking him from behind. Dunn grabbed his gun and shot Braden.

A man on the property waved a visiting reporter away on Wednesday. A woman who answered a phone listed for a Dunn family member said, "We're not talking to anybody."

Stone was booked into the Hernando County Detention Center on a charge of armed burglary and remained there Wednesday in lieu of $50,000. He has served three stints in prison for grand theft, bringing contraband into a detention facility and simple battery.

Braden had two arrests in Florida on charges of reckless driving, criminal mischief and driving under the influence.

Times news researcher Natalie Watson and Bay News 9 contributed to this report.

Burglary binge in Citrus, Hernando counties leaves one suspect dead 01/22/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 10:50pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up

    Blogs

    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Tampa Bay Times honored for top investigative story in Gerald Loeb annual business awards

    Business

    The Tampa Bay Times was a co-winner in the investigative category for one of the highest honors in business journalism.

    Tampa Bay Times current and former staff writers William R. Levesque, Nathaniel Lash and Anthony Cormier were honored in the investigative category for their coverage of "Allegiant Air" in the 60th Anniversary Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism. 
[JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times

]

  3. Pasco woman gives birth to child fathered by 11 year old, deputies say

    Crime

    A Port Richey woman was arrested Tuesday, nearly three years after deputies say she gave birth to a child fathered by an 11-year-old boy.

    Marissa Mowry, 25, was arrested Tuesday on charges she sexually assaulted an 11-year-old and gave birth to his child. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. St. Petersburg showdown: Kriseman faces Baker for first time tonight at the Rev. Louis Murphy Sr.'s church

    Local Government

    A standing-room-only crowd packed a Midtown church banquet hall Tuesday to witness the first face-off between Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker in what is a watershed mayoral contest in the city's history.

    Former Mayor Rick Baker, left, is challenging incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, to become St. Petersburg mayor.