Key West Police are investigating a fatal shooting involving two well-known residents that occurred just after midnight Monday in the parking between Conch Town Bar and the Wendy’s on North Roosevelt Boulevard.

Lloyd “Preston “ Brewer, 57, was arrested for shooting Garrett Hughes, 21, and faces two felony charges of homicide and a felony “weapon offense,” according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Hughes is a well-known Key West High School athlete who played football and ran track before graduating in 2020. Brewer owns the building that houses Conch Town Bar, where Hughes and friends were reportedly drinking.

Prosecutors with the State Attorney’s Office told the Keys Weekly Monday afternoon that they have reviewed video evidence from the bar’s security cameras. The video shows a drunk and shirtless Hughes outside the bar, urinating on the side of the building.

The video shows Brewer arriving and “exchanging words” with Hughes, said Joe Mansfield, chief assistant state attorney.

“The shirtless victim was clearly intoxicated and urinating on the wall when the suspect approaches,” Mansfield said. “I suspect the shooter was annoyed by what he saw, confronted the kid, then pulls a gun and shoots him in the stomach, which proved fatal. There are no weapons on or near the victim, nor is the victim seen reaching for anything. Now, I’d bet my 401(k) that the suspect will file a self-defense, Stand Your Ground defense, but the allegation that he was justified in using deadly force is not substantiated by the video evidence in this case.”

“In its simplest form, Florida’s Stand Your Ground law provides that a person is justified in the use of deadly force and has no duty to retreat if either:

  • the person reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself, or another, or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony; or
  • the person acts under and according to the circumstances set forth in Section 776.013 (presuming a reasonable belief as to the necessity of force in the context of ‘dwellings,’ residences, or vehicles),” according to Florida attorneys.

Two eyewitness statements were also taken from Hughes’ two friends at the bar that night, Mansfield said, acknowledging that a defense attorney will point out their potential bias toward the victim.

Mansfield obtained a search warrant early Monday morning for a blood sample to test Brewer’s toxicology. Those results are pending, he said.

Lloyd Preston Brewer, 57, was arrested after fatally shooting Garrett Hughes, 21, just after midnight on Monday in the parking lot of a New Town bar. MONROE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE/Contributed
Garrett Hughes, 21, died at Lower Keys Medical Center following an early-morning shooting on Monday, Feb. 13 outside of a Key West bar. CONTRIBUTED

Police received a 911 call at 12:28 a.m. Monday, Feb. 13.

“Upon arrival, police encountered a subject who was lying in the parking lot and had been shot,” states the police press release. “While the subject was being treated for his injuries, officers immediately detained the suspect who was still on scene and recovered the gun. The victim was transported to the Lower Keys Medical Center, where he was pronounced deceased shortly after. The scene was secured for several hours while KWPD detectives responded and took over the investigation. The suspect was transported to the police station, interviewed and arrested; charges are pending as the investigation is still ongoing.”

Police officers left the crime scene at 10:15 a.m. Monday, and no crime scene tape remained.

Stay tuned to keysweekly,com for more information as it becomes available.

Mandy Miles
Mandy Miles drops stuff, breaks things and falls down more than any adult should. An award-winning writer, reporter and columnist, she's been stringing words together in Key West since 1998. "Local news is crucial," she says. "It informs and connects a community. It prompts conversation. It gets people involved, holds people accountable. The Keys Weekly takes its responsibility seriously. Our owners are raising families in Key West & Marathon. Our writers live in the communities we cover - Key West, Marathon & the Upper Keys. We respect our readers. We question our leaders. We believe in the Florida Keys community. And we like to have a good time." Mandy's married to a saintly — and handy — fishing captain, and can't imagine living anywhere else.