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With or without Russian influence, Facebook has long been a breeding ground for political division.

As authorities in Florida reported this week, one such partisan argument turned violent at a residence in the Tampa area.

According to WFLA, 44-year-old Brian Sebring was arrested on Monday after he allegedly carried a firearm to the home of 46-year-old Alex Stephens and opened fire.

The altercation seems to have been rooted in an escalating war of words that began on the social media site. Authorities believe Sebring was motivated to visit the victim’s home after Stephens sent increasingly threatening messages online.

“After receiving several explicit messages and threats, the defendant responded to the victim’s home to confront him reference the messages,” police reported, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

It was unclear from available reports what issue sparked the vehement dispute.

Social media profiles indicate the alleged shooter is a married father of two and a registered Democrat. Both he and Stephens attended Robinson High School in Tampa. Records reveal Stephens is a convicted felon but do not show a political party affiliation.

Though investigators describe Stephens as the victim in the shooting, they say both men likely contributed to the rhetorical escalation that precipitated it.

Police reports indicate Sebring cited concern that the meeting would escalate to violence in defending his decision to carry a firearm.

He allegedly parked outside of the other man’s home and began blowing his truck’s horn. When Stephens eventually came outside and began running toward him, Sebring said he fired twice.

Stephens was hit with both shots, sustaining injuries to his right thigh and buttocks.

The shooter fled the scene in his vehicle but police say he was later identified by the victim. Investigators say Stephens was able to escape the immediate vicinity on foot following the shooting.

“The victim ran away and the defendant fled the scene,” according to a police report.

He was transported from an area near the scene to Tampa General Hospital for treatment of his injuries and is expected to recover.

Sebring later surrendered to police on suspicion of carrying a concealed firearm and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

He was then taken into custody and booked into the Hillsborough County Jail. A judge set his bond at $9,500.

A neighbor witnessed the shooting and told local reporters that it initially appeared to be a fireworks display.

“I was just thinking it had to be fireworks,” the witness said. “I thought it was 4th of July. I looked down at my phone: Am I missing some holiday? Should I have off tomorrow?”

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. John Campbell

    August 10, 2018 at 1:44 am

    So two twits decide to harangue each other and the registered Democrat grabs his gun to win the argument. Ya, there’s an upbringing for you. Reach for a gun because you got POed.

    Now the victim isn’t registered to vote, but is a convicted Felon. Gee, I wonder if that might be why he’s not registered to vote.

    It sounds like a couple of lefties who just never learn. :o)

  2. Ed

    August 10, 2018 at 3:08 am

    “A neighbor witnessed the shooting and told local reporters that it initially appeared to be a fireworks display.

    “I was just thinking it had to be fireworks,” the witness said. “I thought it was 4th of July. I looked down at my phone: Am I missing some holiday? Should I have off tomorrow?”

    WTF? Is this an asylum of some kind? The whole neighborhood field testing some drugs?

  3. Paili

    August 10, 2018 at 7:58 am

    $9500 for shooting a man who you harassed in front of his house ? I had to pay $750 for a ticket I received for having my high beams on in San Diego .

  4. Joseph

    August 10, 2018 at 8:26 am

    Say Hello to the new and improved violent Democratic Party. They call us names and try to stop our rallies and we get blamed by the media but when the truth ends up leaking out most of the mass murderers and criminals are or were Democrat voters at one time. Their logic is beyond idiotic.

  5. Guy

    August 10, 2018 at 8:29 am

    Kinda knew it was going there. The Democrats are freaking out.

  6. mike dar

    August 10, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    The only explanation is that some people don’t like themselves.. and the rest of society has to endure their self hatred. As no one who did like themselves would consider throwing the rest of their life away over a war of words.
    So exactly where did these ‘self haters’ get the idea they have so many shortcomings as to be someone they wish not to be- unlikeable?
    Enter… Social media.

  7. Chuck

    August 10, 2018 at 3:38 pm

    Great eye witness…must be another Democrat.

  8. jpj

    August 10, 2018 at 4:32 pm

    The irony is the Democrat carried a gun. The irony is the Democrat used the gun. Wonder if he had to turn in his Democrat Party card in? Don’t the Dems believed in no guns and everyone walk around safe from any malcontent?

  9. Steve Roxx

    August 10, 2018 at 5:47 pm

    He kinda looks like a pervo as well. That weak chin is a good indicator of his left lean

  10. MAGA

    August 10, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    Another violent democrat. Such cowards.

  11. Kamkoz

    August 13, 2018 at 2:49 pm

    I have the anti gun solution!!

    Dem/liberals, Socialists, want gun laws that take away Americans rights to own guns because of all of the gun violence being committed.

    Dem/libs are primarily the sources of all the shootings that are taking place in society today. (Read the statistics)

    If you vote Democrat, Liberal, or Socialist, in the future, it should be made illegal for ANY registered Democrat, Liberal, or Socialist to possess, or purchase a firearm of ANY kind, even if you change parties at any future time.

    All names, and place of residence, are in the system, no extra money would be needed to enforce this.

    Gun violence solved !!

    No more shootings in schools, or otherwise !!

  12. joe

    August 27, 2018 at 4:55 am

    We dont believe in guns ANTIFA armed and dangerous !

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