The Lancaster County District Attorney’s office has determined no charges should be filed in the case of an April shooting that left one man dead at a Lancaster city home.
An unidentified man shot at Tony Torrellas, 31, five times when he entered a home in the 500 block of South Queen Street just after midnight on April 27. Torrellas, who was pronounced dead at a hospital, was hit with four shots in the front and side of his body.
In a news release, the district attorney’s office cited a legal doctrine known as the Castle Doctrine — which states deadly force can be used against intruders in certain circumstances — as the basis for its determination.
The district attorney’s office states it reviewed evidence gathered by the Lancaster Bureau of Police in its investigation, including physical evidence, mobile phone evidence, interview reports and audio recordings, among other investigative materials, before coming to the determination.
There were three people inside the home at the time of the shooting: The unidentified male shooter, Torrellas’ ex-girlfriend, and another woman. All live at the home, and the male shooter is in a relationship with Torrellas’ ex-girlfriend.
According to the district attorney’s office, Torrellas’ ex-girlfriend dropped off her child at Torrellas’ home. After an exchange of text messages turned “unpleasant,” the ex-girlfriend turned off her phone. Torrellas then showed up at her home in the 500 block of South Queen Street just after midnight.
The news release did not provide the names of the man, ex-girlfriend or third occupant of the home, identifying them only as "boyfriend," "woman" and "third occupant."
Torrellas was never invited to the home, according to the release, and was instructed by the other female resident to leave. Torrellas, however, pushed on the door to get into the home.
The boyfriend, from a stairwell inside the home, repeatedly told Torrellas that if he entered the home he would be shot. About three steps in, the narrative states, Torrellas was shot by the boyfriend.
“All gave multiple statements to police and the statements were corroborated and were consistent every time,” the news release from the district attorney’s office states.
The other female occupant said she heard the boyfriend tell Torrellas, “Get out or I’m going to shoot you.”
Several re-enactments by those present were consistent and corroborated by physical evidence at the scene, including the shell cases that showed the boyfriend shot from the stairwell, the district attorney’s office stated.