Deputies are searching for armed burglars who hit three homes

VALRICO, Fla. - Hillsborough County deputies are searching for two suspects after a homeowner came across a burglary in progress Friday afternoon in Valrico.

The incident occurred at 4810 Bell Shoals Road around 1:30 p.m.

The homeowner, John Butler, said he left his house to go the store. He returned 15 minutes later to find two men inside his home. When he told them to leave, he said one fired a shot right above his head. 

"I think he was trying to kill me," Butler said. "It shook me. I'm just glad it wasn't my wife."

The two men reportedly stole jewelry and a revolver before leaving the home. 

HCSO believes the men are also responsible for two other burglaries that took place within a 4-mile radius on Friday afternoon. 

The other homes that were hit include 525 Charles Place in Brandon and 4141 Spring Way Circle in Valrico. Neither of those homeowners were there at the time of the burglary, but iPads were reported stolen at both locations.

"Our bedrooms were all ransacked. The bed was turned upside down and my office is all in shambles," Brandon homeowner Richard Wilson said.

HCSO performed an air and ground search for the two suspects, but as of Friday evening they had not been caught. They are considered armed and dangerous. 

"It's very unnerving," neighbor Marsha Roberts said. "I probably won't sleep very well tonight."

Butler described the suspect who shot at him as a young man, about 6' tall and approximately 170 pounds. He said he was clean cut and shaven. He was last seen wearing a black polo shirt and black gym shorts. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office immediately at 813-247-8200.

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