Masked Home Invader Killed in Gunfight at Florida Property

A masked intruder in Florida was killed by the owner of the residence he entered in the middle of the night, police have said.

Lauderhill police said a gunfight broke out in the residence in Lauderhill, a suburb of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at around 12.45 a.m. on Saturday. Lauderhill Police spokesperson Lt. Michael Santiago said officers responded to the home on the 4400 block of Northwest 16th Street.

Santiago said a masked intruder had broken into the home and exchanged gunfire with the homeowner. WSVN reported that the intruder had entered the property through an unlocked front door.

The homeowner fled the home after the shooting and alerted police, Santiago added. Officers arrived at the scene to find the intruder dead inside the home.

"There was a masked gunman on the floor, deceased," Santiago said, according to the Sun Sentinel.

He said the homeowner had fired a few rounds from his gun "out of his own fear and protection." Santiago added: "After he got into the firefight inside his house, he fled the scene to contact police."

The investigation is ongoing and the identities of the two men involved in the incident have not been released. The Lauderhill Police Department has been contacted for additional comment.

A Statista report published in September 2019 revealed that there are 432,581 firearms registered in Florida—putting the state second only to Texas (which has 725,368 registered weapons) when it comes to the number of guns per state.

Around a third of Floridians are thought to own a gun—with a study by Injury Prevention stating the gun ownership rate in Florida in 2013 was 32.5 percent.

According to a Pew Research Center Survey, three in 10 Americans (30 percent) report personally owning a gun and another 11 percent said they live with someone who does. Among those Americans who own a gun, almost two-thirds (66 percent) say they own more than one, with 29 percent reporting that they own five or more.

The majority of gun owners (72 percent) said they own a handgun or pistol, while 62 percent reporting owning a rifle and 54 percent said they own a shotgun.

And protection topped the list of reasons Americans gave for owning a gun, according to the same survey, with 67 percent saying it is a major reason for them having one. Other major reasons cited by gunowners included hunting (38 percent), sport shooting (30 percent), gun collecting (13 percent) and their job (8 percent).

police tape
Stock photo. A Florida man shot and killed a masked intruder who broke into his home. Christopher Furlong/Getty Images