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Shooting at rats, Florida man tells police after standoff

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Posted at 4:41 AM, Nov 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-13 04:41:35-05

PALM HARBOR, Fla. (AP) — After an eight-hour standoff with police, a Florida man told officers he was only shooting at rats in his yard with a rifle.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said in a news release that neighbors in the Palm Harbor area began reporting hearing gunshots about 3 a.m. Sunday. Deputies heard more shots coming from a house after they arrived.

Authorities say they set up a perimeter around the house where 51-year-old Stephen Jonas lives, trying to contact him for about eight hours. Finally, investigators say Jonas walked out and was arrested. Deputies found a .223-caliber rifle inside and many other weapons.

At least one round hit a nearby home. No one was injured.

Jonas faces a charge of shooting into an occupied dwelling. Court records listed no lawyer for him.