Florida man tearing down home gun range after intense public uproar

After a public outcry – and some generous private donations – a St. Petersburg, Fla., man won’t be putting a gun range on his property after all.

Joseph Carannante, 21, claims he didn’t build the makeshift range made of wooden pallets, cinder blocks and dirt, to hurt anyone. He said he just couldn’t afford to pay to go to a shooting range.

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Homemade Target. Photo source: FoxNews.com

“I just want to use this as my enjoyment. I don’t want to have to go to a gun range when I can just go outside my door,” he said.

But after public outcry from neighbors and a few generous donations, Carannante will indeed be practicing his favorite pastime – shooting his 9mm – in a professional gun range instead of his yard.

A local radio host and hospital separately arranged year-long passes to two nearby gun ranges, according to FoxNews.com

With that news, Carannante agreed to tear down his homemade target in exchange for the donated passes.

“My intentions were never to instill fear in my neighbors. Never my intention at all,” said Carannante. “I was following the law. It’s a poorly written law, and I do believe it should be changed.”

According to local law enforcement, Carannante who had not yet used his target range hadn’t broken any rules.

“The whole thing is covered by state statute, so we have to follow the law there,” said Yolanda Fernandez, a spokeswoman for the St. Petersburg police department. “It’s legal to fire in your backyard as long as you don’t do so in a reckless or negligent manner.”

She said, however, Carannante could have been in violation of noise ordinances.

Even though the Carannante question is settled for now, Democratic state Rep. Daryl Rouson is still on the case.

Rouson has written a bill that would prohibit gun owners from firing weapons on their property, yet insists it will not trespass on a citizen’s Second Amendment rights, he told FoxNews.com.

Meanwhile, Carannante and his relieved neighbors – who’d complained loudly about his gun range plans – are glad to see the turmoil come to an end.

“There’s no bad blood in the neighborhood. We’ll have to work our way back up,” Carannante said. “We just got to take it day by day for now.”

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