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Gun in Spring Hill shooting in July was stolen from deputy

BROOKSVILLE — Deputies arrived at a Spring Hill residence on July 31 to find Thomas Kidder suffering from a gunshot wound to the head.

Kidder, 19, who was flown to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg, told investigators at the time that Douglas Madsen Hughes had accidentally shot him with a .38-caliber Smith & Wesson while they were hanging out in Hughes' bedroom playing video games, said Sgt. Donna Black, spokeswoman for the Hernando Sheriff's Office.

An update on Kidder's condition was unavailable.

Hughes, 18, of 6337 Radford St., was arrested and charged as a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. He had pleaded guilty and been convicted of unarmed burglary in December, records show. Now authorities say Hughes stole the gun and a laptop computer three days before the shooting from the unlocked personal vehicle of James Browning, a Pasco County deputy. The Jeep was parked in front of Browning's residence in Spring Hill, Black said.

Hughes, who was being held in the Hernando County Jail, now faces additional charges of grand theft and armed burglary, according to an affidavit. He was being held in lieu of $27,000 bail.

Black said preliminary evidence indicates the shooting was accidental but that the case remains under investigation.

Staff writer Logan Neill and researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report. Tony Marrero can be reached at or (352) 848-1431.

Gun in Spring Hill shooting in July was stolen from deputy 08/28/10 [Last modified: Monday, August 30, 2010 10:29am]
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