Tennessee Man In Gorilla Suit Arrested After Running Into Wrong House And Scaring Child

Joliet Police Department

There is a bizarre case out of Mt. Juliet, Tennessee where Richard Muzick, 31, reportedly went into the wrong home to play a prank.  Instead, he scared a six-year-old child. It likely had to do with the fact that Muzick was wearing a gorilla costume at the time. What is curious is that he is now charged with aggravated burglary despite the police concluding he was mistaken about the house.

Police responded to a call and learned that, after being confronted, Muzick took off running in his gorilla suit.

What I found interesting was the charge. The police concluded that he was confused by the home and did not just randomly select a home to terrorize a child as a faux gorilla.

In Tennessee, there is a step up to aggravated battery when a defendant unlawfully enters or remains in a habitation (any structure designed or adapted for overnight dwelling) with the intent to commit a felony, theft, or assault therein. (Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-14-403.)  I do not see the intent to commit a felony if this was a mistake and he took no other action or took no property.



By the way, there is a remarkable number of cases of people arrested in gorilla suit. (here and here and here and here and here and here). Indeed, in one Louisiana case, the man hid under a bed but he was still not charged with aggravated burglary. This also includes pranks where the FBI was called in but resulted in lesser charges.

17 thoughts on “Tennessee Man In Gorilla Suit Arrested After Running Into Wrong House And Scaring Child”

  1. As long as they can prove this really was a case of going to the wrong house, then charges should be dropped. I wondered if the parents of the child are furious and wanted something, anything, to be charged against him.

    This is why you lock your doors at all times when you are home. You never know when a guy in a gorilla suit is going to mistake the wrong house. Guy’s lucky he wasn’t shot. If some guy crashed into our house in a gorilla suit, I’m pretty sure my husband would shoot him dead. Out here, there have been a lot of cases of people breaking in, in broad daylight, so a lot of people are on edge.

    You know, I can see how this happened. One time when a bunch of us from work were caravanning somewhere, one of the guys followed the wrong Honda. He accidentally terrorized a woman and followed her all the way home, thinking it was one of us stopping by to pick something up. He had a bad go of it trying to convince her enraged husband that it was just an honest mistake.

    1. Glad you’re back, Karen.

      Was wondering about you..
      Hope all is well.

      Similarly, I had a CouchSurfer walk in on my apt in the DMV.

      My neighbor, an intel guy, was trying to AirBnB while on travel. The manager said No, thus he decided to just let CouchSurfers stay for free to spite the management and the leasehold.

      One CouchSurfer came into my apt to find me getting ready to go out (hence the door was already unlocked), very confusing for both parties…he did not speak English well, but was very apologetic.

      1. That must have been a surprise! A man who had some mental health issues once walked into my parent’s house while I was visiting. They had unlocked the door because they were expecting more family. I looked up, and there was this huge stranger right there. My father knew him, however, and went rigid. He was the adult son of a neighbor, and he struggled with some serious mental health problems. We talked to him and got him to go back home without an issue.

        After that, I harped on my parents to keep their doors locked. We all have keys, and can either knock or let ourselves in. We grew up in a time when you only locked your doors at night. Not anymore.

        Thanks for asking about me. We’re all still good, and praying that continues.

  2. My first thought before even getting to the end of the article was:

    Where is the felony within…?

    Then, I see …. Assault = imminent apprehension of harmful or offensive contact.

    Civil vs Criminal. Criminal was have to be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Prosecutors probably looking for the easy to prove battery case, not assault.

    Then, the mistake of fact defense to a general intent crime of assault.

    If it is not tossed out, well…

  3. Google says this occurred on Monday the 27th. Does anybody recall if there was a corresponding lull in Seth Warner posts?

  4. On the highways, a collision with the wrong car resulting in damage, injury and death is considered an accident. Would this automobile accident been a crime; would the current overabundance of vacuous statutes have existed in the antenineteenth era? 100 years of hysteria and incoherence. God Bless America!

  5. When he took off running in his gorilla suit, his plan was to just blend in.

    1. 😂. That’s funny. Is this Karen S.? I wonder what happened to her…

      Anyone? Let me know.

        1. DBB – Okay, I like to keep tabs on ppl. Make sure no one fell off the ship, as some would say. Good to know.

  6. Who was the intended victim?

    p.s. The charge is bogus. Cops have too little to do with everyone sheltering-in-place.

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