The Fifth District Court of Appeals in Daytona Beach issued its decision Wednesday ending the prosecution of John DeRossett, 60, on the charge of attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer while discharging a firearm, Florida Today reported. DeRossett spent nearly five years at the Brevard County jail before being allowed to leave on bond in March.
The law enforcement officer was Brevard County Sheriff’s Deputy John “Casey” Smith who was shot in the lower abdomen. Smith survived and has since medically retired from the department.
Defense attorneys argued that the Port St. John man didn’t know he was firing at (Brevard) deputies and was only responding to his niece’s screams for help at his front door. The appellate court found that DeRossett was entitled to protect his home against what he thought was a threat.
- DeRossett’s niece, Mary Ellis DeRossett is a convicted prostitute known as “The Cougar”.
- Mary Ellis was prostituting from her bedroom at the home.
- The court found John DeRossett didn’t know about the prostitution and didn’t promote it.
- The shooting investigation uncovered that two other Brevard deputies were among Mary DeRossett’s clients.
- DeRossett thanked God and Jesus.