Petersburg Pilot -

Police apprehend man suspected of firing off rounds in Middle Harbor


Kyle Clayton / Petersburg Pilot

Police escorted Slafter from his boat in a harbor cart because he was having difficulty walking. The man in the blue shirt and khaki pants was found with Slafter in the Lady Lou. His name wasn't provided and he was released from custody later that morning.

Eight Petersburg Police officers and a State Trooper responded to several reports of a man firing rounds in the Middle Harbor around 6:20 a.m. Wednesday morning.

Petersburg Police Chief Kelly Swihart said the department received several calls identifying the shooter as Terry Slafter, 56, who lives on his boat the Lady Lou.

Two officers positioned themselves on the Ocean Beauty Dock-one was armed with a scoped rifle-as a number of other officers approached the Lady Lou.

Swihart said they secured two people from the boat but only arrested Slafter for Reckless Endangerment.

"We don't have any indication that he was shooting at anyone and we haven't got any calls of reports of damage in the area," Swihart said.

Swihart said alcohol was involved and the suspect was injured during the arrest.

"After he came off the boat we were giving him verbal commands and he refused those commands," Swihart said. "One of the officers took him down to the float and when he was going down he hit his nose on the dock."

At this point, police are still unsure how many shots Slafter allegedly fired but they did recover a rifle from his boat as well as around two-dozen rounds of empty brass.

Swihart said no shots were exchanged between Slafter and police and Slafter's injuries did not result from any firearms.

Swihart said more charges against Slafter are likely to follow.


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