MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — A 911 call was released after a Florida homeowners association president and her husband were fatally shot by a neighbor over HOA issues, deputies said.
In the 911 call, a woman reported that her husband, Hugh Hootman, had just shot people. “My husband just shot two people and I believe he killed them,” Hootman’s wife told 911 operators.
Detectives said Hootman shot his downstairs neighbors, Ginger and Henry Wallace, both 81.
Hootman’s wife told the dispatcher that tensions had been rising between the couples, WPTV reported.
“There’s been an ongoing dispute,” she said in the 911 call. “The neighbor downstairs, just the other day, shouted at me and swore at me regarding the washer and dryer.”
Sheriff William Snyder told WPTV that Ginger Wallace, the homeowners association president for their building in the Cedar Pointe community and her husband, Henry Wallace, had confronted the Hootmans at their upstairs apartment days before the shooting.
According to an arrest report, the Hootmans left a community laundry door open. Henry Wallace allegedly cursed and yelled at Hootman’s wife, making her very upset, WPTV reported.
“The suspect’s wife said that the male victim was unkind to her,” Snyder said. “She wouldn’t be specific. He was unkind, sounds like he might have been abrasive. But she doesn’t articulate a really strong case for offensive language.”
Snyder told the news station that Hootman confronted Henry Wallace near the mailboxes and told him to apologize to his wife for how he spoke to her.
The sheriff said Henry Wallace ignored Hootman and tried to walk past him. Snyder said Hootman then reached into his pocket and pulled out a handgun and shot Wallace in the chest area.
Ginger Wallace came outside screaming, the report said. Investigators said Hootman shot her twice as she got closer to her husband’s body.
“This whole thing is just so inexplicable — 75-year-old male, never had any confrontations with law enforcement that we know about, is so provoked by the HOA personnel, on the third time he shoots them,” Snyder told WPTV.
Snyder told the news station that he does feel Ginger Wallace’s role as the HOA president played a part in the shooting.
“At least the two confrontations we know about prior to the double homicide all stem from HOA rules, HOA enforcement rules, the demeanor of the female victim and her husband,” Snyder said.
Snyder said Hootman wrote an apology when he was being interviewed by detectives. The sheriff said the apology could help serve as a confession.