NEWS RELEASE 18-130
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office arrested a 69-year-old Sarasota man after he fired multiple bullets out of his Siesta Key home.
Deputies initially responded to the 1000 block of Contento Street Wednesday just after 2:00 p.m., for the report of a shooting. The complainant utilized the text-to-911 service offered by the sheriff’s office while hiding from the suspect, later identified as Thomas Dudenhoeffer, DOB 09/30/48. As deputies arrived, they quickly took Dudenhoeffer into custody without incident. Investigation revealed Dudenhoeffer fired three bullets from the residence which exited two glass windows on the exterior of the home. Based on witness statements and forensic analysis, detectives believe Dudenhoeffer fired between 10 and 15 rounds inside the home, using a 9MM handgun. Dudenhoeffer admitted to firing the weapon and attributed the crime to hallucinations.
Today Dudenhoeffer faces two counts of Shooting into a Dwelling and is being held on $15,000 bond. He has one prior arrest in Sarasota County for Hit and Run: Failure to Stop for a Crash Involving Serious Bodily Injury. He was arrested by the Florida Highway Patrol in January 2018.
The sheriff’s office, who is only one of only a few agencies in the state of Florida to offer text-to-911 services, is using this opportunity to remind and encourage residents and visitors to utilize text-to-911 if they are in trouble and unable to get safely to a telephone. At this time, the sheriff’s office Public Safety Communications Center is able to accept text messages however, photos and videos will not be received. Citizens are reminded to “call if you can, text if you can’t.”