An Orlando food store owner turned himself in to the Orange County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday, one day after he was indicted on charges of firing a .38-caliber handgun at a man who stole a case of beer.
Abe Kader, owner of the Nu-Way Grocery, 2800 S. Rio Grande Ave., called the grand jury indictment "something crazy."
"I've got four kids and a family to support," he said. "I work hard for my money. "
Kader, 31, was released on $1,000 bond. He is charged with aggravated assault with a firearm. If convicted, Kader faces up to five years in prison. He was charged by deputies Jan. 2 after telling them he fired his gun four times after a man ran out of his store without paying for the beer.
Three bullets hit the getaway car, which was stopped by Orange and Seminole county deputies after a 30-minute chase.
The driver said he was afraid to stop because he thought a truck following him was firing the shots.
A passenger, Antonia Lacefield, 25, of Louisville, Ky., was charged with petty theft after Kader said he stole the beer.
Lacefield was released without bond.
Kader's attorney Mark NeJame of Orlando, said his client plans to plead not guilty.
"It's a shame that a businessman can allow a criminal or thug to come into his store with impunity and take his merchandise and he can do nothing but watch," NeJame said.
A spokesman for the Orange-Osceola State Attorney's Office, which assembled the grand jury, said the indictment was just.
"It's one thing to protect your life and property. It's another thing to go out and try and kill someone. That's intolerable," said spokesman Tim Hetz.
Kader said he moved to Orlando almost two years ago after his store in New York was robbed three times in less than three months. Burglars tried to break into his Orlando store more than three times over the holidays.
After two break-in attempts, Kader said, he bought the handgun and he and his brother began sleeping in the store.
NeJame said his client was not trying to shoot Lacefield, just scare him into giving up the beer.
"It's just pure speculation that he wanted to hit the individual," NeJame said. "If he wanted to hit the individual, he could have."
Source: Orlando Sentinel