When Furniture Warehouse delivery drivers Jason Adamson and Jose Marrero arrived at 55-year-old Mitchell Helton’s house to make a routine dropoff last weekend they allegedly wound up staring down the barrel of a gun.
Police Manatee County say Helton pulled a gun on Adamson and Marrero at his Sarasota home on Aug. 3 after the furniture Helton had ordered showed up more than three months late, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com.
Adamson and Marrero told the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office that when they arrived at Helton’s residence, they observed that his front door was ajar. They knocked and “announced their presence.” Helton was extremely aggravated and began grumbling about the delay shortly after.
When the delivery men inquired if he still would like the furniture, Helton allegedly replied, “Do whatever you want,” the affidavit stated.
As Adamson and Marrero started to unload their truck, Helton reportedly retreated to the back of his home.
The delivery men were unboxing a table outside Helton’s front door when the Sarasota man reappeared, firearm in hand, and pointed it at the two men, and uttered, “You know, I’ve shot people for less,” according to police.
The delivery men attempted to “deescalate” the situation by telling Helton could call Furniture Warehouse and lodge a complaint. They gave Helton a company card and he again returned inside his residence.
The affidavit noted that the men “dismissed the action as a show of anger toward the late delivery,” and finished their job, but afterwards, they notified authorities of the incident. Helton was interviewed by law enforcement and taken into custody a short time later.
Helton initially told police he was upset the two men had entered his residence on Trustee Avenue without his permission, despite the drivers telling police officers they had notified Helton by telephone in advance of the delivery earlier that day. Helton said that he had been “startled by a noise at this front door and then observed a male inside of his residence,” which led to him brandishing his firearm “for his protection.” Helton claimed that he had no clue who the man was when he confronted him.
However, Helton eventually admitted to police that he had actually re-emerged with a gun fully knowing the men had “legitimate business” there.
“Both victims stated they felt in fear for their lives and both denied ever entering the defendant’s home,” the arrest report added. “Despite the safety concern, both victims elected to remain on scene and finish their delivery.”
Police have charged Helton with two counts of aggravated assault. He’s currently being held in the Manatee County jail on $5,000 bond.
A phone call placed to Helton’s residence by Oxygen.com was not answered.
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