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Argument over Dog Leads to Arrest for Attempted Murder

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On Wednesday, May 21, 2014, the Walton County Sheriff’s Office responded to 102 Seymore Drive, Ponce De Leon, Florida, in reference to shots being fired. Once deputies arrived, they discovered that Mr. Joseph Justice, 31, of 102 Seymour Road, had been shot by Mr. James Farrell Davis, 55, of 10256 County Highway 3280, who was still on scene.  The investigation revealed that Mr. Davis walked onto the property of Ms. Heather Sue Carden and Joseph Justice and confronted Carden about his missing dog.  Davis was armed with a pistol grip shotgun and pointed it at Carden threatening to “blow her knee caps off.”  Davis also stated “No, I’m not going to jail for you, I’m gonna kill you.”


Justice, after hearing the commotion, came to the doorway of his residence at which time Davis turned the shotgun toward Justice and stated “and you to.”  Davis fired the shotgun at Justice missing with the first shot.  Justice attempted to retreat back inside his residence to protect his three children.  Davis pursued Justice and a struggle ensued.  Sometime during the struggle, Davis fired another shot from his shotgun striking Justice.  Justice was able to secure a hammer and struck Davis several times in the head until he was able to gain control of the shotgun.  Both weapons were secured by deputies along with a Semi-Automatic pistol that was found on Davis.  Davis and Justice were transported to Bay County Medical Center due to their injuries and have both since been released.  The children were not injured during the incident.


On Saturday, May, 31, 2014, Davis was taken into custody by the Bay County Sheriff’s Office and was transported to the Walton County Sheriff’s Office Jail.  Davis is charged with one count attempted murder, one count aggravated assault and one count armed burglary of an occupied dwelling.