WINTER HAVEN, Fla. - A doorbell camera alerted a father and son that someone was outside the door of their Winter Haven apartment. They armed themselves and went out to find who they suspected of burglary and ended up firing seven shots into the car of a woman who was parked outside of her own apartment.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said there was never a burglar. The person who triggered the doorbell camera was a neighbor returning a package that was delivered to his address by mistake.
It all started when the Colonacosta home’s doorbell camera alerted a 15-year-old resident that someone had been outside the door. The teen peeked out of the door to see who was there, and then went to get a firearm.
Meanwhile, his father, Gino Colonacosta, grabbed his cane and a loaded semi-automatic handgun. Gino and his teen son left the house, both carrying loaded weapons.
Sheriff Grady Judd said the two split up. Gino Colonacosta walked around his apartment building and his son checked the perimeter of the building.
Gino reportedly found a vehicle with tinted windows in the parking lot in front of the building. Assuming the person inside was a burglar, he approached and started demanding the person get out.
The woman inside, who had just returned home and was checking messages on her phone before going inside, put her vehicle in reverse to try and get away from the apparently random, armed person yelling outside of her car.
As she quickly backed up to flee, the teen heard a commotion and ran toward his father.
When the vehicle passed by the teen, he began shooting at the passenger side.
The victim swerved, hitting a parked vehicle, which then hit another parked vehicle.
As the victim drove away, Gino and his son continued to shoot at the car. One bullet went through the empty child seat in the rear of the vehicle.
The victim was able to get to a nearby gas station and call for help.
Gino Colonacosta fired two shots and his teen son fired five during the incident.
Gino Colonacosta is being charged with contributing to the delinquency or dependency of a child, possession of firearms by minor under 18 prohibited, attempts, solicitation, and conspiracy, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, attempted felony murder, culpable negligence, discharging firearm in public or on residential property, improper exhibition of dangerous weapons or firearms.
His 15-year-old son is charged with possession of firearms by minor under 18 prohibited, attempts, solicitation, and conspiracy, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, attempted felony murder, culpable negligence, discharging firearm in public or on residential property, and improper exhibition of dangerous weapons or firearms.