Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Public Safety

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Public Safety

Article excerpt


Clay County homicide investigators are trying to trace the

ownership of a handgun used in the fatal shooting of a

16-year-old Middleburg boy last week.

Sgt. Wes Gronikowski, a Clay County Sheriff's Office spokesman,

said Friday the weapon, a .357-caliber revolver, is thought to

have been obtained in South Carolina by unknown youths and

brought to Clay County.

Tony Wright of the 4600 block of Petunia Avenue died from a

single gunshot wound to the chest, fired by a 16-year-old friend

about 5:50 p.m. Thursday.

"It's under investigation as an accident at this point,"

Gronikowski said.

What detectives were trying to piece together was how the gun

ended up in the hands of the teens, and why the victim was shot

in a shed behind a home in the first block of North Mimosa

Avenue near County Road 218.

The teen who fired the shot lives at the home with his parents,

Gronikowski said. A third juvenile also was present in the shed

at the time of the shooting.

Gronikowski said the parents evidently knew nothing about the

gun, which he said "supposedly came from South Carolina."

Investigators were checking the serial number on the firearm

with authorities in South Carolina to see if the gun had been

reported stolen, he said.

Assistant State Attorney Tim Collins said Friday that, although

the shooting appears to have been accidental, "We'll review the

case for any potential criminal charges."

In another accidental shooting case, Collins said a 37-year-old

Middleburg man will not be charged in connection with a gunshot

wound to his 3-year-old son's right leg.

The decision comes nearly two months after John L. Rogers Jr.

shot himself with his father's .38-caliber revolver, which John

Lawrence Rogers used in his job as a private security guard,

Collins said.

According to the investigation, the father and son were

watching TV with the boy's maternal grandfather in the living

room of their home on Wilderness Circle Drive on March 9. The

child left the living room and the father said he heard a

gunshot and his son scream moments later. …

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