Man Dies In Hopkins County Shooting

One Man Dies In Hopkins County Shooting
Forty year old, Tony Earl, is found dead after being shot inside a Hopkins County home. It happened around eight this morning, just off Union Temple road, in St. Charles.

Some say the two men involved may not be strangers. The home owner says he shot and killed, what he believed, was an intruder in his home. Authorities say the two men were acquaintances. Neighbors say the two men were very good friends. So far no arrests have been made.

"I saw all the commotion, but I didn't know what it was." James Bennett says his neighbor's home became the center of an investigation this morning. Inside the home, located just off Union Temple Road in St. Charles, a man is found shot to death. "It's kind of shocking because it's right here at home. You hear about stuff like that on the news, but it's very seldom it's this close to home," says Bennett.

Hopkins County Sheriff's say the home owner, Kevin Hoffman, called police around eight this morning. He told authorities he had just 'shot and killed an intruder.' When authorities arrived forty year old, Tony Earl, of St. Charles, was declared dead on the scene from a single gun shot wound to his chest.

"I've known him my whole life, and I've known both of them for forty years," says Bennett. He says he's not sure what happened. He says the two men were good friends. "I've seen them together different times," says Bennett. Detective Shawn Bean says the same. "I believe they are acquaintances, slash friends."

Bennett says Hoffman suffers from an injury years ago, but he's not sure if that played a factor in today's incident. "He couldn't protect himself like me and you would, so you don't know how something like that came up or anything," says Bennett. "We're not going to comment whether or not it was self defense. We are still in the middle of our investigation," says Bean.

For now, Hoffman does not face any charges.

Tonight officials continue to piece together what happened. "Were just following up on some statements that were made, and going through the investigative process," says Bean.




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