Teen Arrested For Shooting Occupied Dwelling

Montell Purter

Around 1:30 this morning, shots were fired into a home at 3706 Avenue K just north of Fort Pierce.

Less than three hours later, St. Lucie County Sheriff’s detectives arrested 16-year-old Montell Purter, of 3518 Sloan Road, for shooting into an occupied dwelling, unlawful possession of a firearm by someone under 18 years old and possession of a firearm with the serial number removed, all felonies.

The two homes are less than half a mile apart.

“In an area where our community has experienced several shooting incidents, the hard work of our deputies and the cooperation of a parent resulted in the arrest of a16-year-old who not only confessed to shooting at the home but had a firearm with the serial number scratched off,” said Sheriff Ken J. Mascara. “We’re fortunate no one was harmed and that a gun was taken off the streets.”

The shooting occurred at the home of Lucisana Knight, who was awakened at the sound of gunfire and breaking glass in her home. Shots were fired through the front door and bedroom window.

When detectives asked Ms. Knight who might have fired the shots, she said she had been having problems with Matthew Purter, who lives nearby.

Deputy Shawn Masters and his K-9 partner Gunnar, a Belgian Malinois, were able to conduct a track from the Avenue K home to the front door of 3518 Sloan Road, where deputies took Purter into custody.

His mother, Monica Woods, gave permission to search Purter’s room where investigators found a .38-caliber revolver in a laundry basket. The room also contained two boxes of .357-caliber ammunition. Deputies found five spent .38-caliber shell casings from a trash can outside the home.

Purter admitted to the shooting and said he doesn’t like Ms. Knight.

Detectives took Purter to the St. Lucie Regional Juvenile Detention Center, Fort Pierce, a facility operated by the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice.