From the Appeal-Democrat of September 29, 2009
Armed homeowner thwarts burglary suspects
Three suspects arrested in Sutter County after an attempted home burglary ran into the worst of luck — a homeowner with experience fighting off intruders.
Two women and a man, all Sacramento residents, broke into an isolated house at about 2 p.m. Monday in the 3900 block of O'Banion Road west of Yuba City, according to Sheriff J. Paul Parker. The owner, David Massey, armed himself with a handgun and discovered one woman in his kitchen while the other woman and the man fled out the back door, Parker said.
The suspects got into a Ford Explorer parked on the circular driveway outside and drove it toward Massey, but he fired six shots toward the vehicle just before it rolled onto its side, the 63-year-old homeowner recalled Monday night.
"They drove right across the center of the (driveway) circle towards me, and I yelled at them to stop and fired five rounds into the radiator to make them stop," said Massey. "The car was not three feet from me when it went by; they almost took me out.
"I was in fear of my life. They wouldn't stop, so I shot."
The passengers abandoned the Ford and ran through a flooded prune orchard, but deputies arrested them within a mile of the house. Both women were treated at Rideout Memorial Hospital from injuries sustained in the acc dent, according to Parker.
The sheriff's department identified the detained women as 31-year-old Tiffany Abila and 27-year-old Angelina Walters, and the male suspect as 26-year-old Marcus Campbell. Parker said authorities likely would pursue burglary charges against the three and said others may be pending.
Detectives have recovered jewelry boxes and other items from the Explorer and are checking whether the suspects are linked to any burglaries in the area, the sheriff's department said.
Massey's last encounter with suspected burglars also ended in gunfire. On July 2, 2008, deputies arrived at his house after he reportedly fired his handgun at a suspected burglar fleeing in a pickup and held another alleged robber at gunpoint.
"I wasn't a hero; I just did what I thought I had to do. I just wish I got both of them," he said at the time.
Massey called Monday's incident the sixth theft and third break-in at the home he has owned since 1992, and admitted its remote location has made it a "sitting duck" for would-be thieves. Despite the string of thefts, he declared he would keep the home and was hopeful another house under construction nearby will dissuade at least some thieves in the future.
"Most people in the world are good people, but there's an element out there that doesn't remember 'Thou shalt not steal,'" he said Monday night. "I moved out here for the serenity; I don't know how serene it is today."