Hatchet-Wielding Florida Man Shoots Landlord In The Face: Police

A 77-year-old man is in stable condition after he was allegedly attacked by his tenant and employee, officials with Florida's Volusia Sheriff's Office report.

According to a press release sent out on June 29, Fredie Vale, 47, was charged with attempted first-degree murder after he reportedly swung a hatchet at his landlord and boss, threatened to kill him and shot him in the face on Tuesday.

The victim told police he had a good relationship with Vale and knew him for several years.

hatchet axe florida man attack
A Florida man attacked his landlord with a hatchet before returning to his apartment for a gun, then shooting his landlord in the face. Above, an image of a hatchet. Getty Images

What is Criminal 'Attempt'?

FindLaw, a legal information website, stated that the definition of criminal "attempt" varies in different states.

When it comes to a criminal attempt at murder, the organization noted that establishing the intent of the suspect is likely to secure a conviction.

"Thus, it's important to note that it would not be enough for an individual to intend only harm or even serious harm to a victim, for purposes of an attempted murder conviction," FindLaw stated.

The Attack, Per Officials

Officials said that Vale lives on the victim's property in a barn apartment. He reportedly approached the victim while carrying the hatchet.

"Vale handed the hatchet to the victim, then suddenly grabbed it back, threatened the victim and began swinging the hatchet, causing the victim to back up and fall," officials said. "The victim told deputies Vale then jumped on top of him and attempted to strike him with the hatchet."

The victim blocked and kicked at Vale, who suddenly got off of him, officials said. Vale went to his apartment and retrieved a pistol, which officials said he then used to shoot the victim in the face.

Vale went back to his apartment while the victim made it back to his house and told his wife what happened.

"As the couple locked their doors and called law enforcement for help, they saw Vale drive off at a high rate of speed," officials said.

The victim was taken to a hospital where he was treated for a gunshot wound to his face and a gash in his thigh. The injuries were non-life-threatening and police reported that he is in stable condition.

It took officers about three hours to find Vale. They took him into custody and he is being held without bail until his first court appearance.

Newsweek reached out to Volusia County Sheriff's Office for further comment.

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