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Man Charged With Two Counts of Attempted Murder In 2nd Degree After Shooting In Lakeland

Lakeland, Florida – The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has arrested Rikiji Chapper, DOB 08/27/1985, and charged him with two counts of Attempted Murder in the 2nd Degree following a shooting in Lakeland in the early morning hours of Saturday, April 25th.

The shooting occurred around the Chestnut Hills Drive/2300 block of Lakeland.

Editors Note: The exact location and names of victims are not being released due to Marsys Law.

According to reports Chapper and the two victims, he is accused of shooting, were hanging out earlier in the evening of April 24th. It appears that Chapper was staying at a residence next door to the incident area. During that time it is reported that a verbal dispute occurred between the suspect and the victims. Chapper asked his girlfriend to to take him to his brothers residence. At approximately 1 am, Saturday morning the 25th. Chapper returned intoxicated and helped by his girlfriend into his residence at approximately 3 am. Chapper and the 2 victims (who were also drinking) exchanged words, but were not aggressive towards each other.

At approximately 3:09 am multiple gunshots were heard at the incident location.  Immediately thereafter, one victim ran into his apartment, woke his live-in girlfriend,  and said, “Rakiji shot me”. The second victim fled the scene on foot and ran to his residence. That victim later told law enforcement officers that the first victims neighbor shot him.

Both shooting victims were transported to Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center with gunshot wounds. The first victim was shot in the chest. The second was shot 3 times. Once in the leg, once in the abdomen and once in the bicep. Both victims were listed in critical condition after the incident and the first victim had been intubated and was unresponsive.

Chapper was later arrested at his brothers residence. According to reports while there, Officer McLaughlin of Lakeland Police Department overheard Chapper say to another subject, “I made sure I killed them”.  In addition to this admission, this statement indicated he knew that there was more than one victim.

Chapper is currently in Polk County Jail. He was given a $202,000 bond. This isn’t the first time Chapper has been arrested. He has multiple previous arrests for DUI, Drug Possession, Driving Without A License, Violation of Probation and resisting arrest without violence.

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Staff Reporter

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