Authorities Investigate Deadly Neighborhood Shoot-Out - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

04/17/06 - Trinity

Authorities Investigate Deadly Neighborhood Shoot-Out

by Ramonica R. Jones

The Perry family was in the middle of an Easter celebration Sunday night when shots rang out. Half a dozen people in front of the home hid behind parked cars for safety. The alleged gunman reloaded, followed them behind the home, and unloaded another round from an AK 47.

One of those bullets went through two walls of a nearby bar and hit 50-year-old Dody Peroutka of Onalaska in the abdomen. She died in an emergency room in Trinity County.

Kaye Weaver of KC's Bar said, "Bullets come through the back of the building. She was walking out of the bathroom, got shot and killed and we are very, very sorry. We miss her and love her."

Kathy and James Perry said their neighbor, Tommy Middleton, was behind the shooting. He was reportedly worried their son would hurt a pet alligator he'd put in a private pond behind the Perry's home. Milton told them he wanted to fight.

James Perry said, "I told the boy to go on back home; we don't need none of this, go on home, and he ran back to his mule and pulled out the AK 47 and just started unloading clips."

The Perrys counted close to 70 bullets in and around their home. They'd never had words with their neighbors until two years ago when Middleton accused them of hurting another pet alligator he'd put in the same pond.

Middleton had been seen sitting outside his home all day Sunday, watching the Perrys before the shooting.

He is in the Trinity County jail charged with murder. His bond is set at $750,000.

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