Man and Dog Shot After Argument at Florida Keys Restaurant

An argument over a dog Friday night led a man to shoot the dog once and another man several times in the groin, Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says.

Authorities say 63-year-old Dwight Engelhardt was arrested and charged with the attempted murder of 55-year-old Charles Whitaker.

MCSO says Whitaker and Dirk Giagu, 46, went to Hog Fish Restaurant on Stock Island in their dinghy to have a few drinks. After having a few drinks, the two men and the dog got back onto the dinghy to return to the 3D Marina on Shrimp Road, where they both live.

Before leaving, Whitaker got into an argument with a woman at the bar about the dog, police say. The woman told a detective she made a joke about stealing the dog and Whitaker took her seriously, got angry and began to yell and swear at her.

At that point, Engelhardt became involved in the argument and told Whitaker to leave because he was trespassing. Engelhardt then went into the cabin of his sailboat, returned with a .380 caliber handgun and began shooting, according to a police report.

Whitaker was struck three times in the groin area; the dog was struck once in the leg. Whitaker and Giagu took the dog left the area and returned to the 3D Marina.

Whitaker was later airlifted to Kendall Regional Hospital where he is in critical but stable condition. The dog was treated for its injury which was reportedly not life threatening.

MCSO deputies found Engelhardt still on his sailboat and took him into custody. Police say the gun he used was on the boat.

Contact Us