New interrogation footage: Key West businessman says ‘I stood my ground’ before fatal shooting

Prosecutors say surveillance video contradicts Lloyd Preston Brewer III’s self-defense claim in shooting death of Garrett Hughes, 21

KEY WEST, Fla. – Newly-obtained footage shows detectives interrogating a Key West business owner after prosecutors said he fatally shot an unarmed 21-year-old man whom he had confronted for urinating on his building.

Lloyd Preston Brewer III, 57, has since been charged with second-degree murder in the Feb. 13 death of Garrett Hughes outside Conch Town Liquor & Lounge, located at 3340 N. Roosevelt Blvd., just after 12:30 a.m.

The bar is located, along with other tenants, in a shopping plaza owned by Brewer.

The nearly hour-long video shows Key West police detectives photographing and interviewing Brewer, who chose to speak to police without an attorney present, hours after he fatally shot Hughes.

(Watch the full video below.)

“I don’t know where he’s coming from and he’s pissing in the parking lot and on the building,” Brewer tells detectives in the video.

Recalling the incident, he tells police: “I said ‘Look, I own this. Stop.’ He continued to approach. I said ‘I’m armed,’ It appeared as though he was reaching for something. The first shot went off this way. The second shot went up in the air. To the best of my recollection he was already on top of me. It happened that fast.”

Surveillance video showed the two exchanging words in the parking lot. It’s unclear in the video when shots were fired, but the mortally-wounded Hughes is then seen walking away from parked cars before he collapses.

“I stood my ground,” Brewer told detectives. “I feared for my life.”

Brewer himself called 911 soon after.

According to the arrest report, officers said Brewer “could not identify what exactly was aggressive or threatening or threatening about Hughes’ behavior and denied having seen Hughes in possession of a weapon.”

Prosecutors said the surveillance video contradicted Brewer’s self-defense claim.

As the morning goes on, the video shows the moment Brewer learned Hughes did not survive and that he would be charged with murder.

“I just talked to the detective out there,” an officer says. “The kid did pass.”

“The state attorney is going to go ahead and charge you with homicide,” the officer later says.

Attorneys for Brewer, who remained in the Monroe County Jail as of Tuesday, have promised a vigorous defense.

“Mr. Brewer’s post-arrest statement and the video tape evidence in this case do not support the Monroe County State Attorney’s claims in the media that this was a ‘senseless killing’ or that Mr. Brewer had a ‘warped interpretation of the situation,’” attorney Chris Mancini said in a statement to Local 10 News on Tuesday.

Mancini said in a previous statement that Brewer’s defense team “will present the true picture of what actually occurred” in an April 26 bond hearing.

The Hughes family also filed a civil lawsuit against Brewer.

Full interrogation (audio begins after 30 seconds):

About the Authors:

Janine Stanwood joined Local 10 News in February 2004 as an assignment editor. She is now a general assignment reporter. Before moving to South Florida from her Washington home, Janine was the senior legislative correspondent for a United States senator on Capitol Hill.

Chris Gothner joined the Local 10 News team in 2022 as a Digital Journalist.