Burglary victim who fatally shot intruder speaks exclusively to News Channel 8

The state attorney's office is investigating the case

Christopher Solomon

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Every time Christopher Solomon enters the kitchen of the home he shares with his mother in Tampa Heights, his heart starts racing. It was March 15 when he heard a commotion, armed himself with a handgun and went to investigate.

“I took a deep breath and tried to prepare myself for whatever was going to happen,” Solomon said, pointing at the kitchen door that was kicked in during the ordeal. “And that’s when the situation happened.”

Solomon shot an intruder, killing him. Days later, we learned the intruder was Lanny Ray Marler II. Marler had several arrests in Hillsborough County for burglary and grand theft, and had just been released from Florida State Prison after serving three years on a burglary charge.

Solomon tells News Channel Eight the home was burglarized once before, about a year ago. On the advice of authorities, he and his mother took all of the first floor blinds down to deter any would be-thieves. That’s when he bought a gun, took a course and paid for the proper permits. He hoped he would never have to use that weapon.

Now, Solomon’s dealing with the effects of that tragic event, playing the incident over and over again in his head. He’s also concerned with his mother’s well-being.  “It’s very difficult. You know, my mother, she’s going through it. She’s the one I’m worried about the most. I have my moments but I try to be strong because I have to be strong for her and my kids, but I’m going through anxiety real bad,” Solomon said.

The state attorney’s office is currently reviewing the case and has yet to say if Solomon will face any charges. But authorities on scene told him he did the right thing.

Friends of the family have set up a fundraising page to help pay for damages to the home and hopefully upgrade security measures at the house.

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