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Thursday, April 25, 2024

Leesburg man allegedly points gun at stepmother’s niece during verbal spat

A Leesburg man was arrested for battery after allegedly pointing a firearm at his stepmother’s niece during a verbal argument.

Tommie Lee Ferguson
Tommie Lee Ferguson

Deputies responded to a verbal argument involving a weapon at an undisclosed Leesburg residence around 10:35 p.m. Saturday, according to an arrest report from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. The complainant called in stating that she got a text message from her niece advising her she was having issues with 40-year-old Tommie Lee Ferguson, who had a firearm. She also received a text message from her niece stating, “If I die, I love you.” 

Upon arrival, deputies met with Ferguson’s stepmother who stated that he and the niece got into a verbal argument earlier. Both parties had since separated from each other as the niece left in her vehicle before law enforcement arrived, the report said. 

The stepmother first advised that there was no firearm involved in the argument or in the residence. However, when questioned further in reference to a spent shell casing found at the front of her residence, she stated there was a firearm present but that it was not involved in the argument. She also stated that at no time did the argument turn physical, the report said. 

While deputies spoke with the stepmother, the niece returned to the residence in her vehicle. A deputy talked to her, and she advised that she was engaged in a verbal argument with Ferguson. During this dispute, he displayed a firearm and pointed it directly at her. She further advised that her neighbor was at the residence during the incident and was able to take the firearm from Ferguson, the report said. 

Further investigation confirmed that the neighbor was inside Ferguson’s residence, so one of the deputies interviewed him, as well. He stated that Ferguson and the niece were in a verbal argument, and he had to remove a firearm from Ferguson’s possession. He then placed it in a location where Ferguson did not have access to it, the report said. 

One of the deputies then met with Ferguson who admitted to being in a verbal dispute with the niece earlier that evening. He advised that he used his firearm to euthanize one of his chickens on his property earlier in the day, but he denied pointing it at the niece, the report said. 

The report noted that no party present on scene wanted to give a sworn statement regarding the incident. The niece did not wish to file any criminal charges against Ferguson, either. Still, due to the nature of the incident and the verbal statements from all parties, he was taken into custody and transported to Lake County Jail without incident. 

Ferguson was charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon without intent to kill (domestic). Bond was set at $10,000. 

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