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Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Ocala man jailed after pointing gun at neighbor

Thomas Garrett Alley
Thomas Garrett Alley

An Ocala man who claims to have accidentally discharged a firearm near a neighbor in a previous dispute is behind bars after another incident.

Marion County sheriff’s deputies responded to a call about an aggravated assault with a firearm in the 10900 block of S.W. 45th Avenue, where 69-year-old Thomas Garrett Alley was accused of pointing a gun at a neighbor.

The victim told deputies he was working on landscaping by his mailbox when he observed Alley standing in his garage next door.

The victim claimed Alley removed a silver handgun from his pocket and pointed it at him, a sheriff’s office report states.

The victim said he ran to his vehicle out of fear and grabbed his own handgun. He said Alley went back into his garage and came back out with a long gun, so he ran inside his residence and called 911, according to the sheriff’s report.

The victim claimed that Alley had shot at him in the past during their long-standing dispute. Deputies located a sheriff’s office report from last year in which Alley stated he accidentally discharged a firearm during a disturbance, the report says.

Deputies then spoke with Alley, who changed details about the incident several times. He claimed he never pointed a firearm at the victim but instead the victim pointed one at him while he was drinking coffee in his garage. He said he then entered his residence, retrieved his rifle, brought it outside to his garage door and held it at his side. He also denied ever having a handgun, the report says.

After being read his rights, Alley admitted that he does own a handgun and described it as a silver 9mm pistol. He said the victim had never seen his handgun and didn’t know he had it. He also said he had the weapon in his pocket during the incident and didn’t know how the victim knew he had a silver handgun, according to the report.

Alley was placed under arrest and transported to the Marion County Jail, where he was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill. He was released on $2,000 bond and his next court date hasn’t yet been set, jail records show.