Saturday, August 30, 2008

Florida: Police: Woman Shoots At Men Trying To Break Into Car

Miami Lakes, Florida

From NBC6 of August 25, 2008
Police: Woman Shoots At Men Trying To Break Into Car

Miami-Dade police said a woman opened fire on three men who were trying to break into a car in Miami Lakes early Thursday.

The three men were trying to break into a car outside a home near Northwest 57th Avenue north of the Palmetto Expressway at about 1:30 a.m., police said. Miami-Dade police said they think the men were trying to steal the car's stereo.

A man and a woman who were inside the home came outside. When the man got into a confrontation with the three men, the woman started firing a gun, police said. Neighbors said they heard between four and seven shots.

"These subjects came here to do a crime," said Bobby Williams of the Miami-Dade Police Department. "Once that crime was committed, the boyfriend came out to stop them or at least to talk to them. They attacked him, so she was in fear for her boyfriend's safety and herself."

Ilana Lopez was inside the home at the time of the shooting.

"If he was in my property, burglarizing one of our vehicles, she did what she had to do to protect it," Lopez said.

The three men took off in an SUV, which police said was stolen. Police stopped the suspects outside a nearby CVS store and arrested them.

One of the three men had been shot in the chest and was airlifted to Jackson Memorial Hospital. He was in critical condition, NBC 6's Steve Litz reported.

The investigation continues. The suspects were expected to face charges.

Lopez said the car stereo was stolen once before, about three weeks ago.

"What can I say? I'm just tired of this going on around here," she said.

Florida's "Castle Doctrine" allows a potential victim to respond with deadly force if an intruder or criminal has intentions of death or great bodily harm, Litz reported. If the shooting is justified, the person will not be prosecuted.

Police said the shooting appeared to be justified, so the woman who fired the shots might not face charges.

The woman had no comment for reporters Thursday morning.

The names of those involved have not been released.

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