Bradenton man shoots, kills machete-wielding neighbor, police say

A Bradenton man shot and killed a neighbor who entered his yard armed with a machete early Sunday morning, Bradenton Police Department said in a news release.

Officers were called to a shooting in the 700 block of 11th Avenue East, west of Ninth Street East, just before 3:30 a.m.

They found a 31-year-old Bradenton man with two gunshot wounds, the news release said. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Police did not identify the victim, citing Florida’s Marsy’s Law which protects the names of crime victims.

A suspect was not identified at the scene of the crime.

Bradenton Police Department and the Manatee County Homicide Task Force investigated the shooting and identified 35-year-old Bruce Brooks as a “person of interest,” the police department said.

Brooks later contacted investigators and told them that he shot the victim in self-defense.

Brooks and other witnesses told police that the man was involved in a domestic argument outside of his home and then started yelling at neighbors.

“The victim then armed himself with a machete, entered a neighboring yard, and approached Brooks, who was sleeping in the home’s carport,” a news release said. “Brooks woke up, saw the victim coming with the machete, and shot the victim with a handgun in self-defense.”

Brooks has been charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

An investigation is ongoing.

Anyone with information on the case can contact Detective Jeff Beckley at 941-932-9356 or

To remain anonymous and eligible for a cash reward of up to $3,000, call Crime Stoppers at 1-866-634-8477 (TIPS) or send an anonymous through