Florida Man Tried to Gun Down Truck Driver Just 5 Days After Being Released From Prison, Police Say

A man has been arrested for attempted murder just five days after being released from prison, say police.

The Citrus County Sheriff's Office (CCSO) told local media deputies had responded to calls about violent clashes in front of a Circle K convenience store in Citrus Avenue, Crystal River, on Sunday.

Upon arrival, the investigators heard gunshots and found a number of fights had broken out between 60 and 80 people.

Multiple physical altercations were ongoing as deputies attempted to gain control of the situation, identify potential victims, and locate possible suspects, said the sheriff's office in a media statement.

While dispersing the crowd, officers found a truck with multiple gunshot holes.

The person inside the vehicle was uninjured, but officers say the driver had a lucky escape as the bullet holes were near where they were seated.

After securing the crime scene, officers began quizzing those nearby.

Witnesses at the scene remained tight-lipped and refused to co-operate with investigators.

After looking at a variety of photographs, detectives said they identified 32-year-old Demare Barnes.

Citrus County deputies say Demare Barnes spent the last four years in prison, and was just released five days ago. Now he's back behind bars, this time on attempted murder charges. https://t.co/dfwgJYCAkk

— FOX 13 Tampa Bay (@FOX13News) October 6, 2020

The sheriff's office told local media that Barnes had a lengthy criminal history, including nine felony convictions from battery to fleeing or eluding law enforcement and had been released from prison on Oct. 1.

After obtaining a warrant, Barnes was arrested on Tuesday.

In a media statement, the sheriff's office said: "Members of the CCSO's Tactical Impact Unit along with personnel from the United States Marshall's Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force were able to locate Barnes in Crystal River and take him into custody without further incident.

"Barnes was arrested in reference to the warrant for attempted murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and for violation of probation. He is currently being held at the Lecanto Jail on no bond."

Prison bars and keys
A file photograph of prison bars and keys. A Florida man has been arrested for attempted murder just days after being released from prison. Getty

Sheriff Mike Prendergast praised his officers for their swift action and said he was thankful the truck driver was not hurt.

He said: "Barnes is no stranger to violence. His extensive criminal history makes that evident.

"Despite being sentenced in 2016 and serving five years in Union Correctional Institute, Barnes still posed a deadly threat to our community.

"I am so thankful the victim, in this case, was not harmed and CCSO professionals were able to rapidly capture this dangerous criminal for the safety of our citizens."

Barnes, of Crystal River, is facing charges of attempted murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and violation of probation.