Sunday, June 21, 2009

Minnesota: Would-be Burglar Shot to Death

Moorhead, Minnesota

From KFYR of June 21, 2009
Would-be Burglar Shot to Death

An apartment break-in ended in a shooting, with the tenant killing the intruder. It happened to our east in Moorhead, Minnesota around midnight Saturday.

The burglar died after being shot in the chest at close range with a shotgun.

It`s been an emotional night for Sara Graham. "I thought he was drunk and trying to rob me; I did not know he was," says Graham. She begins to cry and can`t finish her sentence.

She was sleeping in her apartment when a man walked in in the middle of the night. She yelled at him to leave, and he did.

"No clue who he is," notes Graham.

But the intruder came back, this time entering another apartment. The tenant told police the man refused to leave and tried to pick a fight with him. The apartment owner grabbed his shotgun, and when the intruder attacked again, the tenant fired. It was a fatal shot.

Moorhead police Lt. Tory Jacobson says, "The entire circumstance has to be closely examined and specifically saying X and Y equal this result, you know, have to have variables that come into play, and no one would wish to be in that situation of having to choose between life or death."

Jacobson says everyone has a right to protect himself. That`s what David Allen says his brother, the apartment tenant, did.

"I know my brother isn`t that kind of person, he`d be the first to call the cops. I`m kind of confused by the situation," explains Allen.

The injured man fled back to Graham`s apartment, holing himself up in her daughter`s bedroom.

Neighbor Nelly Peralez says she hoped the deadly scene was only a nightmare. "It`s just shocking, I mean this morning when I woke up I just kept thinking saying please don`t let it be true because I live here," she says.

But as Sara Graham surveys her blood stained carpet, she says her nightmare is just beginning. "He was screaming. He was crying. I`ll never forget it. I`d rather see it again than hear it all over again," she says.

Moorhead police say they will not charge the shooter, apartment tenant Vernon Allen. Police say the dead burglar was a 17-year-old Moorhead boy.

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