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Renter shoots burglar in Indian River County; Second person of interest turns himself in

Posted at 6:34 PM, Feb 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-02 13:55:28-05

UPDATE: The Indian River County Sheriff's Office says a teen person of interest is in custody. The sheriff's office says he turned himself in and detectives are interviewing him about last night’s armed burglary and shooting incident.


The Indian River County Sheriff's Office said an intruder is hospitalized after he was shot by a resident Thursday evening, while deputies still are searching for a teen in the case.

Deputies responded to a burglary at a home around 5:45 p.m in the 300 block of 14th Place SW. 

Officials said a resident at the home, identified as Taylor Reese, 25, woke up to the sounds of his door being kicked in. Reese told deputies he retrieved a firearm and confronted the burglar, identified as 19-year-old Howard Bartee III.

Gunfire was exchanged and Bartee III was shot twice, collapsing in the street. He was transported to Lawnwood Regional Medical Center but expected to survive his injuries. 

Deputies are still looking for a 16-year-old who is considered a person of interest involved in the shooting.  He has a juvenile warrant and is being sought by detectives.

Two guns were recovered on the scene, which deputies believe belonged to the resident and the intruder.

Deputies said Reese was taken to the Indian River County Sheriff's Office and has been cooperative with investigators.

Neighbor Alisa Altenhoff said she heard four gunshots and called 911.

“When I went out the front door I saw the homeowner had his weapon and he noticed I was scared so he dropped it, and he put his hands up and said 'please call 911 for me. Someone tried to rob me,'” said Alisa Altenhoff.

She said she spoke with the resident after calling 911. 

“He was mad and himself. He said I’ve never fired a weapon and you know, I hurt somebody, but I did not know what to do. He also said they shot at him first," Altenhoff said.

The burglary and shooting suspect ran from the home and collapsed in the street before police arrived and rescue crews took him to the hospital.

“Him and the homeowner were kind of spatting back to each other as to why he broke into his home and said, you know, he did not want to shoot him. He kept asking him why’d you do it, why’d you break in? He wouldn’t answer,” Altenhoff said.

The burglary suspect is expected to survive. The resident was not injured.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Lester, through Public Safety Dispatch at 772-978-6240, in reference to case number 2018-20405. You can remain anonymous and possibly be eligible to a reward of up to $3,000 by contacting the Treasure Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-800-273-TIPS.