Man pleads no contest to charge in St. Johns tractor assault

Howell Morris accused of chasing neighbor down driveway, yelling 'Run, fat a**!'


ST. JOHNS, Fla. – A St. Johns County man pleaded no contest to an assault charge after he was accused of chasing his neighbor down with a tractor, News4Jax learned Wednesday.

Investigators said Howell Morris, 72, got into a property dispute in June with Scott Lynch. The episode was filmed by Lynch's wife, who called 911 and gave the video to deputies.

Morris' assault charge will be dropped after 18 months provided Morris:

  • Enrolls in Veterans Treatment Court
  • Pays Scott Lynch $2,000 for damage to his property
  • No longer has contact with Scott Lynch
  • Does 50 hours of community service

Lynch, 53, told deputies the dispute escalated when Morris climbed into his tractor, drove onto Lynch’s property and chased him down his driveway, yelling, “Run, fat [expletive]!”

Lynch said he ran for his life, fearing Morris would have run him over if he stopped. The chase came to an end when Lynch took refuge inside his garage and shut the door.

WATCH: Cellphone video captures tractor chase

Video recorded by Lynch’s wife showed Morris “steer the tractor towards the victim as he was running down his driveway,” the incident report said.

After reviewing the clip, the deputy took Morris into custody.

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