GULFPORT, Fla. – On Sunday night, officers were called to the scene of a shooting that occurred inside a vehicle at 5632 25th Avenue South. Twin brothers Mathias and Thomas Parkinson-Freeman were sitting in the 1995 Nissan Pathfinder, which was parked at their home. The brothers, along with a mutual friend, sat in the vehicle as they talked and joked. There was no indication of any sort of conflict. At one point, Mathias pulled out a concealed handgun and pointed it at his brother. Thomas responded by producing his own handgun, pointing it at his brother, and pulling the trigger. Mathias was mortally wounded after being struck in the face when the gun discharged.
At the time of the shooting, Thomas was wearing a gun belt that he had left over from his former employment as a security officer for Dunbar. He had apparently been wearing the belt, with a personally-owned firearm, to show it off to the others.
Officers did find a pipe with marijuana residue in the vehicle; at this point it is unknown if any of the men were under the influence.
Detectives concluded that Thomas was not acting in self-defense when he drew and fired his gun because he told detectives that he was not in fear and that he did not believe Mathias had any intention of shooting him. Thomas said that he reacted automatically based on training and that he does not know why he did so.
He has thus been charged with manslaughter, a felony of the second degree. He is being held at the Pinellas County Jail, and as of this writing, bond has not yet been set.