Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Riverdale, Illinois

From of May 23, 2006
78-Year-Old Fends Off Teenage Burglary Suspect

14-Year-Old Hospitalized With Gunshot Wounds

A teenager who tried to rob a house is recovering after being shot by an elderly homeowner who decided to fight back.

But it's the life-and-death struggle that unfolded in south suburban Riverdale that stunned police.

The victim is a 78-year-old ex-Marine, who is also a disabled former firefighter.

The robbery suspect is 14-years-old.

Police say the teen surprised the homeowner. He took a pair of pruning shears, hit him in the head and left him for dead.

But, somehow, as the teen ransacked the house, the victim got up, got his gun and shot the suspect four times.

"This 78-year-old man today refused to be a victim. He was fighting for his life and today, he won," said Police Chief Pete Satriano.

The suspect is under arrest but still hospitalized.

That feisty homeowner has been treated and released.

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