CLEARWATER, FL (WFLA) — A man who was believed to be high on drugs when he broke into a Clearwater couple’s home, died on the way to the hospital after a homeowner fought him off with a machete and deputies tasered him six times.
Investigators with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office say Heather and Steve Aiosa woke up at 2:10 Tuesday morning to find a stranger, Robert Alcade, standing in their bedroom.
Heather told her husband to call 911. But Alcade told them he had already called 911 because someone was trying to kill him. Alcade then started throwing things in the bedroom and behaving strangely. He also tried to climb the bedroom wall.
Steve Aiosa grabbed a 22 caliber rifle that he kept under the bed and went outside to load it, but he couldn’t load it because the gun malfunctioned. He then went back inside the home and grabbed a machete that he also kept under the bed.
Investigators say Alcade then tackled Heather Aiosa and the two struggled on the ground, locked in a violent battle. Steve Aiosa then hit Alcade on the legs with the machete multiple times, creating large, gaping wounds. However, that did not stop Alcade and Aiosa continued to cut him with the machete.
“It was a very, very bloody scene,” said Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri.
Alcade grabbed the rifle and he and Aiosa began fighting over the rifle. Deputies arrived and tried to get him to put down the rifle, which he refused to do. Deputies used their tasers on him six times, but it did not stop Alcade. Finally, deputies were able to handcuff him and he was sedated and put into an ambulance.
“His legs were all hacked up with a machete,” said Gualtieri.
The emergency responders headed to Bayfront because of the severity of the machete wounds. However, Alcade stopped breathing in the ambulance. He was pronounced dead at Northside Hospital.
Gualtieri said Alcade had a criminal history spanning 19 years and that it appeared as though he was on drugs when he broke into the Aiosa’s home. Alcade’s father told detectives that he used drugs and it was “only a matter of time before he was in jail or dead.”
Sheriff Gualtieri said the incident appeared random. He said Heather and Steve Aiosa were not injured and they were the only ones at the home, which they moved into about four months ago.
Gualtieri called it a “very unfortunate situation.”
News Channel 8 talked with the neighbors who dialed 911.
“He was yelling, ‘Call 911, call 911, acting irrational. And sweating profusely,” Estela Lorente said.
Lorente said he looked scared and said six to eight people were chasing him. She could see signs of drug use.
“As we were talking to him, that they were after him and they were gonna kill him,” Steven Lufriv explained. “He seemed like he was high on something, and just out of control. But he was very scared.”
They were concerned he could’ve broken into their home, the couple said.
“At one point, the gentleman was acting so ya know, crazy, that he came towards me and touched me,” Lufriv said. “ And he looked like he was gonna try to ya know; he wanted to go in.”
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