Man arrested for threatening neighbors with gun


GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Henry Jay Hardeman, 72, was arrested yesterday and charged with three counts of aggravated assault after allegedly threatening neighbors with a gun.

At about 5:35 p.m. yesterday in the 1000 block of SE 21st Avenue, Hardeman reportedly started yelling at a child who was riding his bike and playing in a nearby yard. He then reportedly came out of his house and began to walk around his property. The victim’s sister started yelling back at Hardeman, and Hardeman went back inside his house, picked up a pistol, and allegedly pointed it at the child, his sister, and her boyfriend through a window.

A witness told a Gainesville Police Department officer that Hardeman said, “I’ve been thinking of a way to solve this problem for a long time” before he went back into his house.

When officers arrived, Hardeman did not immediately come out of his house, and once he did, he reportedly ignored multiple commands to walk toward the officers. Instead, he reportedly walked back into his house, then came out again, walked to his vehicle, reached into it, then closed the door. He eventually complied with commands and was arrested. In a search incident to arrest, officers reportedly found two magazines containing a total of 14 .45 cal rounds in his pocket.

Post Miranda, Hardeman invoked his right to have a lawyer present but later reportedly said, “This is the first time that I’ve had to arm up since I’ve been in Gainesville.”

Officers obtained a search warrant for Hardeman’s house and reportedly found two firearms.

Hardeman has one local misdemeanor conviction, from 1988. He has criminal convictions in other states between 1964 and 2004. Judge Walter Green set bail at $300,000.

Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 

  • I am a firm believer in our 2A and the right to defend yourself a supporter of Florida SYG law and open carry. but I draw the line with this idiot he should not own a gun

  • This guy is getting exactly what he deserves. Nothing wrong with it. $300,000 bail will give him some time to think about his stupid choices. Now with that said I am going to throw a wrench in the works. Quinnell Thompson was arrested on same day. He is a convicted felon, on probation for a violent offense, now charged with aggravated assault, armed burglary, and theft. His bail was set at $40,000. What is Judge Walter Green thinking? Given his criminal background he should have never been walking on the streets anyway.

  • Part of this story is not being told. What drew the man’s attention in the first place? Why did he ‘patrol’ his yard and why did he point the gun?

  • Umm, he’s that old and didn’t know that’s illegal? If there’s neighborhood mischief going on, the GPD would know he should be defending himself. But it doesn’t look that way in the report SO FAR. Maybe he’ll be exonerated later…. I looked at the map and see it’s surrounded by woods and a cemetery, in District 1.

  • Judge Walter Green???? Hahaha. How does he come up with these bail amounts? Does he have a wheel he spins and wherever it stops is the amount? What a pathetic judge.

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