ST. PETERSBURG (AP) — A ski-mask-wearing man who broke into his former girlfriend’s house and threatened her with a gun early Tuesday morning was shot dead by their teenage son, authorities said.
John Heisler, 46, initially attempted to break in through a window at the St. Petersburg home where Jolene Andrews, 37, lived with her son and daughter, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.
Andrews and her new boyfriend, 47-year-old Alton Pyles, went outside to check on a loud crashing noise when they encountered Heisler, who authorities say was dressed in black tactical gear, including the ski mask and thigh holsters.
Andrews and Pyles ran back inside after Heisler pointed a gun at them, the news release said, but Heisler followed and forced his way inside. Heisler grabbed Andrews by the upper body and tried to force her to the ground, authorities said. Pyles called for help, awakening 18-year-old Malachi Heisler, who emerged from his bedroom with a gun.
The teen told investigators his father pointed a gun at his mother and then at him.
“In fear for his life, Malachi Heisler fired his weapon striking (John) Heisler in the upper body,” the news release stated.
John Heisler was pronounced dead at the scene. No charges have been filed.
Malachi Heisler told local news media outlets Tuesday afternoon that he fired his gun only five or six seconds after coming out of his room. When asked if he recognized the intruder as his father, he replied, “At this point ... it didn’t matter. The decision was made.”
Malachi Heisler told reporters his 13-year-old sister was home but asleep in another room during the entire confrontation.
“It’s probably better that she stayed asleep,” he said.
Andrews had obtained a temporary restraining order against John Heisler in April and was later awarded an extension until May 2016.
Heisler was arrested in April and charged with felonious possession of a firearm, according to Pinellas County jail records. He was later released on $10,000 bail.