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Police Chief Has Warning for Would-Be Intruders: 'We Live in Florida...Most People Are Armed'

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In Florida, run by a pro-Second Amendment governor and county sheriffs who don’t mess around, the bad guys are finding it increasingly difficult to commit crimes without consequence.

And in many cases, those consequences come long before a jail cell and a court date. Just ask 27-year-old Tyriek Tramaine Washington, who, according to Fox News, is one of two intruders who allegedly broke into the home of a Floridian with a concealed carry license in Haines City, Florida.

Haines City Police Chief Gregory Goreck said Washington and another person were discovered by the homeowner inside his residence when he arrived home. That’s when the homeowner drew his firearm and fired, striking Washington several times.

Goreck made an example out of Washington, using him to warn his fellow criminals in Florida and, specifically, Polk County, that many residents are carrying firearms and know how to use them to defend themselves, their families, and their property.

“One should expect that if you are brazen enough to enter into someone’s residence and it is not yours, with intent to commit an unlawful act, there may be repercussions,” Goreck said during a news conference. “We live in Florida, and more so, we live in Polk County, and most people are armed.”

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Goreck wasn’t exaggerating. According to Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services data, which is accurate to Dec. 31, 2022, a staggering 85,482 Polk County residents hold CCW permits. With a population of roughly 753,000, that means just over 11 percent of Polk County residents hold a CCW permit.

The number of homeowners with legally owned guns is presumably much higher.

In other words, criminals are truly rolling the dice with their lives, especially ones brazen enough to break into homes to steal possessions or harm the occupants.

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While Washington was struck several times, he’s lucky to live in America. Goreck said his officers were able to track the suspect down in a nearby park using the help of police dogs. Once they located him, they began emergency life-saving procedures.

“Immediately at that point the officers, even though this was a felon who had been illegally inside someone’s house, immediately changed focus and changed gears and went from a search and locate and apprehend to saving this individual’s life,” the chief said during the news conference.

Washington’s injuries were said to be non-life-threatening, according to Fox.

The burglary suspect will have plenty of time to heal up and think about his life choices at the Polk County jail, where he was processed after being charged with burglary for his dumb criminal actions that nearly cost his life.

As for the homeowner, the law was 100 percent on his side, as it should be in that scenario. Police officers said he cooperated with their investigation, and the homeowner, who wasn’t identified in the report, was found to have legally defended his home, according to Fox.

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If Polk County, Florida, rings a bell, it’s likely because its Sheriff Grady Judd has made national headlines before, most recently in October after taking a hardline stance against looters during Hurricane Ian.

“People have a right to be safe in their homes. They have a right for their property to be safe, even when part of their home may be torn away and these looters, that’s unacceptable, absolutely unacceptable,” Judd said during a “Fox & Friends” interview.

“I would highly suggest that if a looter breaks into your home, comes into your home while you’re there to steal stuff, that you take your gun and you shoot him. You shoot him so that he looks like grated cheese,” he added.

Clearly, being a criminal in Polk County, Florida, is not the best career choice.

God bless Florida.

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Ryan Ledendecker is a freelance journalist and writer. He began reporting news and writing commentary during the 2014 Ferguson riots. Prior to that, he worked as a web editor and columnist for an award-winning local newspaper.
Ryan Ledendecker is a freelance writer covering politics and breaking news. He previously worked as a columnist and web editor for an award-winning local newspaper. When he's not writing, he's honing his competitive BBQ skills. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook, and Truth Social.
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