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Teens charged in attack of Dunedin store owner

A Dunedin store owner was beaten in his home Wednesday night by two men authorities say burglarized his business.

Kevin J. Halleran, 42, of 1186 Bass Blvd., was in good condition Thursday at Mease Dunedin Hospital. He sustained serious head injuries in the beating, which Pinellas County sheriff's officials say was designed to silence him.

Jesse T. Anderson, 19, of 1919 Macomber Ave. in Clearwater, and Louis G. Salvati, 18, of 1560 San Roy Drive in Dunedin, were arrested early Thursday in connection with the assault and the burglary.

They were charged with attempted first-degree murder, burglary and armed robbery. They were being held at the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $200,000 bail each.

Sheriff's spokeswoman Marianne Pasha said Halleran's store, the Blue Jay Grocery at 785 San Christopher Drive, was burglarized Tuesday night.

Pasha said Halleran, who knows Anderson and Salvati, had information that the two were responsible for the break-in. Beer, cigarettes and lottery tickets were stolen.

When Halleran returned from a night out Wednesday, he was attacked in his home by two men who had broken in. Pasha said the two men were Anderson and Salvati, who wanted to silence Halleran about the store burglary.

Halleran was beaten with a steel ball from a trailer hitch. He also was robbed of cash.