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Grady Judd: Woman shot and killed man trying to break into her home with tire iron

The sheriff said it appears the woman was within her legal rights when she shot the man to death.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd tells reporters about a shooting that occurred early Saturday. The news conference was published as a Facebook Live on the sheriff's office's Facebook page.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd tells reporters about a shooting that occurred early Saturday. The news conference was published as a Facebook Live on the sheriff's office's Facebook page. [ Polk County Sheriff's Office/Facebook ]
Published Aug. 22, 2020

A woman shot and killed a man who was using a tire iron to break into her home early Saturday morning, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said.

The incident occurred at about 6:40 a.m. Saturday on Ellie Road in an unincorporated area of Polk County near Auburndale.

At a news conference Saturday morning, Judd said the homeowner and the man she shot knew each other. They had been part of a group of four -- two men and two women -- who had gone out the night before. They all returned to the woman’s home at about 4 a.m., Judd said.

Related: Frostproof scarred by killing of three friends: ‘Life here has changed forever.'

At some point, the man who would later be shot got into an argument with his girlfriend. He left the home in a car with the other man, but he returned later and started banging on and kicking the front door, demanding to see his girlfriend, Judd said.

Judd said the other man tried getting him to leave, but he refused and retrieved a tire iron from a car. He used it to break a window and tear through a screen The woman who owns the home then shot him dead. She and the man’s girlfriend were the only people inside the home at the time, Judd said.

Judd said deputies are investigating the shooting, but added that “it appears that the shooter was perfectly legal to defend her home from a burglar.”

The names of the people involved were not released Saturday morning. Judd said more details could be released later in the day.