Anti-government man from Florida fatally shot by fellow member of ‘sovereign citizen’ movement

An anti-government partisan from Florida who was supposedly a “sovereign citizen” was reported to be shot and killed by a woman, a fellow member of the same movement, on Monday.

The suspect is a 33-year-old woman named Neely Petrie-Blanchard and is alleged to have shot Christopher Hallet in Ocala. The Associated Press reported that she accused him of working with the government to deny her the custody of her children.

Both the suspect and the victim thought of themselves as “sovereign citizens”, followers of a loosely-affiliated anti-government movement. The movement says that even if someone is a resident of the US, they are not bound by the laws of the country or any other social norms.

Hallet was the head of a company named E-Clause LLC. It had a Facebook page that featured many posts about whether the government of the US could have any authority over the citizens.

Petrie-Blanchard was arrested in Georgia after the Tuesday shooting and stated that she could not be detained by law enforcement.

Ashley Paulk, the Lowndes County Sheriff, said, “She’s one of these people who claim they’re not part of the United States – sovereign people. They don’t believe any of the laws apply to them. Obviously, she’s not leaving”.

The suspect was also indicted in an unrelated case on Tuesday for allegedly abducting her daughters from the home of their grandmother back in March. She was only permitted supervised visits with her daughters. But in March, she was seen driving off with them in a Ford Explorer. The car had the license plate “ECLAUSE”. 

She is to be returned to Florida from Georgia so she can face charges of murder for shooting Hallet.

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Rittika Dhar
Young aspiring content and creative writer and blogger, is currently pursuing an MA in English Literature.

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