A 47-year-old man is now in custody in Gadsden County, accused of killing a man as he stood in his own doorway. Investigators say the victim, Jerome Pete, tried to put a stop to a relationship between that man and his 17-year-old niece, and paid for it with his life.
Just a few of Jerome Pete's 10 brothers and sisters were all together for Christmas, just days before he was murdered.
"Everybody was happy, cheerful, you know, never would expect anything like this to come, but God works in mysterious ways.
Gadsden County sheriff's deputies were called to Pete's home on Post Plant Road at about 5:30 Monday. He died of gunshot wounds minutes later.
Deputies say 47-year-old Andrew Romeo Johnson is the man who pulled the trigger one day after a heated argument over Pete's 17-year-old niece.
"She had an ongoing relationship of some type with the suspect, Andrew Romeo Johnson, and the family who member who was shot and is now deceased attempted to intervene in that and prevent it from continuing," said MAJ Ed Spooner.
Investigators say Johnson sat in this car about 50 yards from Pete's house. The niece went to the door and as they were talking, deputies say Johnson fired two shots with this 270-caliber rifle.
Pete's sister lives next door and heard the gunshots. His brother is shaken, but relieved that there's been such a quick arrest.
"It'll all come out in the end. Hopefully it does and justice will be served. I just thank God for that, that they did catch him."
Andrew Johnson is in the Gadsden County Jail charged with murder. Court records show he's been in and out of Florida prisons since 1977 on robbery and weapons charges. Investigators are still questioning the niece to determine whether she was part of the plot or if she was surprised by the gunfire too.