Elderly Florida woman shoots, kills armed intruder at 3 a.m. in her home

An armed intruder was shot and killed at 3 a.m. by a 67-year-old woman after he barged into her Florida home, authorities said.

According to the Putnam County Sheriff's Office, deputies arrived Wednesday at the Interlachen home and found Reginald Best lying on the floor, bleeding from a single gunshot wound. He was transported to a hospital, where he died, authorities said.

The woman told deputies she heard the front door handle shaking around 3 a.m. and went to investigate. 

"She thought it might be her husband returning from work, so she opened the door," authorities said.

At that time, authorities said Best forced his way into the home. The woman, who was armed with a firearm, told Best to leave the home multiple times. 

She told deputies he raised up both arms, and she saw he had a firearm in his hand. 

"Fearing for her life, she shot Best one time. After the shooting she called 911," authorities said.

Prior to the shooting, authorities received several erratic calls from Best and another woman on Silver Lake Drive.

"During one of the calls Best had told dispatchers he was hiding from his neighbors and there were people in orange standing outside his residence," authorities said. "In the call from the other female, she told dispatchers Best had jumped out of the window at 172 Silver Lake Drive with a firearm and ran down the street."

Deputies were en route to the calls when the shooting occurred.

"This call for service is a perfect example of why I continue to support and fight daily for the rights of law-abiding residents to own firearms," Sheriff H.D. ‘Gator’ DeLoach said in a Facebook post. "All firearm owners have a responsibility not only to themselves, but also to their families to maintain proficiency with a gun, as our victim here today clearly has."

DeLoach continued to say: "If it were not for her foresight to arm herself, the outcome could have been much graver. It’s unfortunate that Best was struggling with some apparently profound issues and posed a deadly threat to the victim and her family. She absolutely had the right to defend herself and I’m grateful that her decisive action stopped the threat, and eliminated the risk of further loss of life, making her entire neighborhood safer."