Deputies: Father shoots attacking son

Both suffer non-life-threatening injuries


PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. – A 53-year-old Putnam County man shot his 30-year-old son who attacked him late Tuesday night, according to the Putnam County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies said Clay Jernigan was asleep at about 11:30 p.m. at his home in the 100 block of Silver Beach Boulevard in Pomona Park when his son, Tyler Blair, engaged in a fight with him. Deputies said the fight escalated and ultimately ended when Jernigan retrieved a .22-caliber rifle and shot his son.

Jernigan told deputies his son, who lives with him, began yelling and screaming and banging on the walls. Jernigan said he got out of bed to see what was going on and was confronted by his son, who was irate.

Deputies said Blair had been drinking a large amount of tequila prior to the shooting.

According to a police report, Blair began beating Jernigan and throwing him around the house. Jernigan suffered numerous bruises and scrapes and a shoulder injury.

Deputies said Blair walked away into the kitchen at some point during the attack, and Jernigan took that opportunity to grab a rifle to defend himself from further attack.

Blair returned a few moments later and became violent again, deputies said. They said Jernigan, acting out of
fear, fired the weapon at Blair, stopping his attack.

Deputies said Jernigan then rendered first aid and called 911.

Jernigan was taken by ambulance to Putnam Community Medical Center. Blair was flown to UF Health Gainesville. Both suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Deputies said the shooting investigation is ongoing and additional details regarding the investigation and potential criminal charges related to the shooting will be released when they become available.