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Cops: Gang member Mathew Santos shoots man in head during fight over gun, victim dies

12:09 PM, Jun 12, 2013   |    comments
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Holiday, Florida -- Pasco County Sheriff's deputies say the man who was shot in the head over the weekend in Holiday has died.

Deputies have arrested the man who they say shot 22-year-old Jerone Leake during an argument Saturday evening.

Twenty-one-year-old Matthew Santos told detectives he was in his bedroom Saturday night around 6:30 p.m. when Leake came over to visit. 

At some point, Santos was playing with a semi-automatic pistol when Leake asked for the gun. Santos told deputies he said "no" and Leake reached for the gun anyway. He said he continued to refuse to let Leake hold the gun and, during the argument, he reportedly admitted to shooting Leake in the head because he would not stop demanding the gun.

Detectives released more information on June 12 saying Leake was about three to four feet away from Santos when he was shot with his head turned. He was hit above the right ear. He had only been at the home for about 20 minutes before the shooting.

Leake was removed from life support on June 9, about a day after being pronounced brain dead.

Investigators say Santos initially said the shooting was an accident, but later changed his story to indicate he shot Leake to protect himself.

Santos was taken to the Polk County Jail and initially charged with aggravated battery. After the State Attorney's Office reviewed the case, on June 12 Santos' charge was upgraded to second degree murder.

The sheriff's office says Santos is member of the "Bounty Hunters Blood Gang".

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