Jonathan Brunelle, 42, is facing life in prison after being found guilty as charged with Second Degree Murder with a Firearm following a nearly five day trial in Lee County. The jury came back with the verdict just after midnight on Saturday.
The crime happened in June 2017 when Brunelle and his 20 year old son got into a verbal argument at their home in Lehigh Acres. Brunelle called the Lee County Sheriff’s Office on the main phone line and said “they better get here before I put a bullet in him” referring to his son.
Brunelle had a gun, a Smith and Wesson 40, which he gave to his neighbor to hold onto while deputies were on their way. When deputies arrived the dispute between father and son had been settled and the son was trying to find a ride to go stay with another relative.
While deputies were on scene, a neighbor said they heard Brunelle say “wait until the cops leave the “expletive” is going to go down.” As soon as deputies left Brunelle demanded his gun back, went inside his home and shot his son in the stomach. The defendant then called 911 and claimed he accidentally shot his son. His son died from the gunshot wound at the hospital.
Brunelle’s sentencing is set for June 10th. Assistant State Attorneys Brenda Wade and Erin Hughes handled the case.
State Attorney’s Office