Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Longview, Washington

From the Longview Daily News of August 30, 2005
Watchman fires at car

What was initially reported as a "drive-by shooting" early Monday morning turned out to be a shot fired in a quite different circumstance.

Longview police were dispatched a few minutes after midnight after a young man called from his home in Longview, reporting that someone in a brown van shot at his vehicle when he and two passengers were driving around in the area of the Mint Farm.

"There wasn't any warning," the 22-year-old driver said Monday evening. "There aren't any 'no trespassing' signs out there."

"We saw a muzzle flash, and the windshield bust open," he said. "When I got home, I discovered a huge hole in the hood, and the windshield broke from a fragment. But from the angle, it looked like he was firing directly at me, not at my hood."

Police found a bullet hole in the vehicle, Detective Jim Duscha said.

Police checked out the Mint Farm area and spoke with the night watchman of a truck-driving school, Duscha said.

The watchman told police that he saw a vehicle driving recklessly in the parking lot and cutting cookies on the property. He said he thought the vehicle was going to run him over, so he fired his handgun, Duscha said. No one was injured.

"I think they at least owe me a new windshield," the driver said.

Police made no arrests. The Cowlitz County Prosecuting Attorney's Office is reviewing the evidence.
Ewing, Pennsylvania

From the Trenton (NJ) Trentonian of August 31, 2005
Store owner shoots thief in legs

A township liquor store owner hid inside in the darkness early yesterday and confronted a brazen burglar, hitting him with pepper spray, then shooting him in the legs.

Though the suspect, Patrick Falcey, managed to escape from Sherwood Liquor Fair at Spruce Street and Arctic Avenue, police later surrounded his house in Trenton and he surrendered.

Baran wouldn’t discuss the showdown inside his store at 6:15 a.m. Police said they were called to a burglary in progress, and when they responded, Baran told them he’d spent the night on guard sleeping in the store, after a recent spree of liquor store burglaries in the area.

"He was asleep behind the counter when he was startled awake by the sound of glass breaking," Smith reported.

"He activated the store’s silent alarm system and grabbed a can of Pepper Spray and a 9mm handgun. The burglar had his back turned to Baran, unaware of his presence. Baran purposely made a noise so the burglar would turn around and when he did so, he was sprayed in the face with pepper spray," Smith said.

Baran and the burglar struggled, and when the suspect picked up the hammer he’d used to break the front-door glass, Baran squeezed off two shots, Smith said.

"The burglar then made his way to the door saying something about being shot," Smith said.

"The burglar ... pulled himself into his car and as he did so Baran fired two more shots into the engine compartment of the car." But the burglar fled the scene.


Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Mesa, Arizona

From Phoenix’ of August 30, 2005
Mesa is near to 2004 count of homicides

Two weekend killings have Mesa edging toward last year's number of homicides.

The first shooting occurred Saturday in the 300 block of East Sixth Avenue after an early morning altercation between two Mesa men, police said.

Russell Wagner, 54, told police he shot Aaron Prescott, 19, after Prescott tried to enter his home about 2:30 a.m. He said he opened his door after hearing yelling outside and Prescott tried to enter through a screen door.

Wagner claims he shot in self-defense and told investigators he didn't know Prescott, Detective Tim Gaffney said.

Police questioned Wagner and released him.
Warner Robbins, Georgia

From the Macon Telegraph of August 30, 2005
(Scroll down)
Pawn shop employee, burglary suspect exchange gunfire

A pawn shop employee escaped injury in an exchange of gunfire with a burglar late Friday night, Warner Robins police say.

Warner Robins police Lt. Bobby Brantley said the suspect also was not hit and fled with a stolen handgun.

The suspect was interrupted by the employee who arrived at the Northside Pawnshop at 1313 Green St. just before midnight.

The suspect was described as a white male, mid-20s, 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighing about 165 pounds with tatoos on both arms.

According to a Warner Robins police news release, the employee responded to the business alarm, which automatically calls his residence when the alarm is sounded. The employee was fired upon as he entered the store and he returned fire. The employee fled the pawn shop and called 911. The suspect also fled.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Buffalo, New York

From the Buffalo News of August 29, 2005
Bar security guard returns gunfire

A security guard at the Copacabana Bar, 751 Fillmore Ave., returned fire early Sunday after shots were fired at him, according to Ferry-Fillmore District officers.

Bobby D. Lee told police that several shots were fired at him at 3:45 a.m. and that "he saw a weapon pointed at him and flash from the muzzle." He fired three shots from his gun, for which he has a permit, and the man fled east on Broadway.

The shooter was described as a black male, about 23 years old, standing 5-feet-8 and weighing 130 pounds. He had a thin build and was wearing black pants and possibly a black hoody.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Sarasota, Florida

From the Bradenton Herald of August 28, 2005
(Scroll down)
Robbery attempted

An armed man and a woman tried to rob a jewelry store Saturday for the second time in three months, authorities said.

The male robber pointed a black semi-automatic gun at the clerk at K's Jeweler on Bee Ridge Road about 9:30 a.m. and told the clerk not to move, according to a Sarasota County Sheriff's Office report. When the clerk tried to move to the back of the store, the armed man stopped him.

As the clerk reached for a gun in an ankle holster, the male robber jumped at him, the report stated. They wrestled for the clerk's firearm but the robber got it. He then ran away from the store with his partner, a woman.

The clerk told authorities that the male robber was wearing a slim, black, nylon "mask" around his eye and nose area, and that the woman had chin-length hair in dreadlocks, according to the report. The couple drove away in a black four-door Mitsubishi or Nissan with tinted windows.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Savannah, Georgia

From Savannah‘s of August 26, 2005
Man Shot During West Savannah Robbery

An attempted robbery was foiled after a woman shot the suspect.

Police said a man was trying to break into an apartment on Greengate Court in west Savannah late Friday night. That's when the woman living in the apartment shot at the man.

Police did not know how many times the man was shot. There is no word on the extent of his injuries.
From the Savannah Morning News of August 27, 2005
Burglary suspect shot, hospitalized

A man remains in the hospital after a woman shot him when he broke into her westside apartment.

Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police have not released the man's name, but said his injuries are not life-threatening.

The man climbed into a woman's bathroom window in a Greengate Court apartment around 10 p.m. Friday, according to a police report.

The resident confronted the man, grabbed her gun and fired several shots, police spokesman Bucky Burnsed said.

The man was struck several times, but was still able to stumble out of the apartment and climb into a BMW, the report says.

It is unclear how many times the man was shot and where.

Several minutes later, police were called to Westlake Apartments for reports of a man suffering from several gunshot wounds.

Police found a car with a discription similar to that given by the burglary victim.

The driver and a passenger in the car told police the man came up to them and said "I need a ride to the hospital because I've been shot. Don't stop because I'm going to jail," the report says.

An emergency medical crew rushed the man to Memorial Health University Medical Center. Police plan to charge him upon his release, the report says.

Detectives interviewed the woman and released her. They have no plans to charge her, according to Burnsed.

"She was protecting her home and herself," Burnsed added.

The woman was not injured.

Police don't believe the woman knew the suspected burglar, but said the woman had been victimized before.

"The woman had been burglarized before and decided to arm herself," Burnsed said.
Taylorsville, Utah

From the Salt Lake Tribune of August 27, 2005
Taylorsville man shoots brother

A 24-year-old Taylorsville man, who shot his sword-wielding younger brother during a fight Thursday morning, was questioned by authorities and released after it was determined the man acted in self-defense. Eric Johnston shot 19-year-old Prentiss Johnston in the chest when Prentiss lunged at Eric with a 3-foot sword, Taylorsville police Sgt. Rosie Rivera said. The fight occurred just after 5 a.m. in the 2200 West block of Whitaker Drive. Prentiss Johnston was flown to LDS Hospital in critical condition where he was later upgraded to serious. Investigators detained and questioned Eric Johnston at the home. He was later released after officers decided the shooting was self-defense, Rivera said. No charges have been filed, but the case remains under investigation.
Reading, Pennsylvania

From Allentown’s TheGALChannel of August 26, 2005
2 Killed In Morning Home Invasion

Two people are dead and two others are hospitalized after an apparent home invasion in Reading.

Police said someone at a home on the 200 block of North Ninth Street called police around 3:30 a.m. to say that someone had broken into the home.

When police arrived at the scene, they found residents Azusena Hernandez-Aviles, 26, and Vicente Aviles-Negron, 34, with gun shot wounds and two men dead.

Police said it appears two men broke into the back of the house, duct taped one resident and forced him to open the front of the house.

"At this point, one of the people inside the house either wrestled with one of the persons, took a gun from them or had a gun of their own," Capt. Francis Drexler said.

Police said a child living in the home apparently slept through the whole thing.

"They're really nice people, really respectable," neighbor Ruth Montanez said.

The brother and sister were hospitalized with their injuries. Aviles-Negron is reported in satisfactory condition and Hernandez-Aviles is in critical condition.
Anchorage, Alaska

From Anchorage’s of August 26, 2005
No Charges Filed

Five months after a fatal shoot out at the Dimond Center Mall we learn there will be no charges filed. On March first of this year, fourteen-year-old Calil Gross-Mininall was fatally wounded after being hit by gunfire. The crime sent shockwaves thru the Anchorage community. Bullets were fired mid afternoon with shoppers just feet away. Today investigators along with the DA's office say the evidence collected revealed a group of young men including the victim walked out into the parking lot. Gross-Mininall had a handgun, as did another boy. They then say, gross-Mininall fired the first shot, seriously injuring a boy... And then one of the other boys fired back. District Attorney Bob Linton said, “Under these circumstances we concluded that we could not disprove self defense. We could not prove the three men were not justified in using force to fire back in the exchange of gunfire.” Police Chief Walt Monegan says, “I can tell you that the anchorage (sic) police department and district attorneys office are extremely frustrated in a case like this whenever someone is killed in our community, it is our job to try and find out who did it and was it justified and in this case we couldn’t find out neither.” Police say the statements of the three young men differed as to who on their side did the shooting. There were no other eyewitnesses or physical evidence to prove which of the three fired the shot that killed Gross-Mininall. If new evidence or witnesses come forward, .the DA's office says they will re-consider filing charges. Meanwhile both the police and the DA's office say their goal is to perfect self-defense laws to better hold people accountable.
Bryan, Texas

From the Bryan-College Station Eagle of August 27, 2005
'My first reaction was, Boom! with the pistol'

Bryan man recalls how he defended himself, friend

Somewhat short of breath, Bryan resident Andy Fitts recalled Friday how he had only one choice the evening before when he watched a man repeatedly stab his good friend, then rush toward him, plunging a knife into his chest.

Fitts said he could not do what he had planned in a matter of seconds: knock the culprit on the head with a gun - the only weapon he had quick access to.

"My first reaction was, Boom! with the pistol," Fitts said, motioning as if he was shooting while saying he was unsure how many shots he fired. Police later would say 48-year-old Amos Ybarra was shot twice in the torso.

"It's the only choice I had," he said.

(Much More)

Friday, August 26, 2005

Albuquerque, New Mexico

From the Albuquerque Tribune of August 26, 2005
Man shot dead at Wal-Mart

A Wal-Mart employee is recovering from stab wounds while her ex-husband is dead from gunshot wounds after the couple fought inside the Southeast Heights store.

While working in the deli, Joyce Cordoba, 46, was approached by Felix Vigil around 5 p.m. Thursday, Albuquerque police spokeswoman Trish Hoffman said this morning.

The divorced couple have a history of domestic violence, Hoffman said.

Vigil, 54, jumped over the deli counter and began to stab Cordoba, Hoffman said.

Due Moore, a customer who witnessed the stabbing, pulled out a gun a shot Vigil dead, Hoffman said.

Moore, 72, had a concealed arms permit and was an unpaid volunteer with the Police Department's cold case unit, Hoffman said.

Moore was taken into custody Thursday, questioned and released, she said.

"It looks like it will be justified," Hoffman said.

Cordoba was taken to University of New Mexico Hospital with multiple stab wounds and is in serious but stable condition, Hoffman said.
From Albuquerque‘s of August 26, 2005
Wal Mart shooter likely saved life

A man attacking his ex-wife with a knife inside a southeast Albuquerque Wal Mart was shot and killed by a 72-year-old man Thursday evening.

It all happened around 5:30 p.m. at the store on San Mateo near Zuni. There was mayhem and confusion inside a southeast Albuquerque Wal Mart as employees and shoppers were sent fleeing by the sound of gunfire.

The victim in this case is 46-year old Joyce Cordova. She is in critical but stable condition at this time at UNM Hospital.

Albuquerque Police say Cordova had a long history of domestic violence with ex-husband Felix Vigil. A co-worker says Cordova was working in the deli was attacked by her ex-husband.

Vigil was shot to death by 72-year old Due Moore. Police won't say how many shots were fired, but some witnesses tell News 13 they heard at least three shots.

Police say Moore had a concealed carry license and is a well-known volunteer with APD's cold case unit.

“It’s probably a very good thing he (Moore) was there,” says APD Sgt. Trish Hoffman. “Ms. Cordova may not be here today if it had not been for him.”

Police say there was a valid restraining order in place against the victim's ex-husband.

Police say Moore has been very cooperative and has not been charged with any crime
Emphasis ours.
Charleston, South Carolina

From Charleston’s The Post and Courier of August 26, 2005
Store owner takes law into his own hands

Intruder suffers shotgun wounds at business that has been frequent target of crime

Cecil and Jerry Reynolds were fed up with people breaking into their tire store.

About 4 a.m. Thursday, Jerry "did what the law allows him to do," Charleston County Sheriff Al Cannon Jr. said.

Reynolds, 49, shot a man in the face with a 12-gauge shotgun. It happened outside Reynolds Tires when an alleged burglar drove into him with a stolen car. Charles-ton County Sheriff's officials said.

After he was shot, driver Clayton Brown swerved the stolen black Volvo and crashed near the store. Brown, 38, was at Medical University Hospital in critical condition Thursday night.

Jerry Reynolds didn't want to talk Thursday about what happened.

"I'm proud of him," said his father, Cecil Reynolds, 78. "He's a pretty levelheaded guy."

Ninth Circuit Solicitor Ralph Hoisington told sheriff's authorities that Reynolds will not be charged, Clark said.

Historically, South Carolina case law has upheld the use of deadly force as a defense when a person's life, home or business is threatened.

In 2001, then-Attorney General Charlie Condon instituted a home-invasion policy that protected citizens from prosecution if they were defending themselves against intruders.

Cannon doesn't recommend that every business owner take the law into his or her hands, but he said Reynolds had every right to protect his property.

Brown will be charged with second-degree burglary and possession of a stolen vehicle, police said.

Passenger Tajuana Ford, 25, of Charleston, faces similar charges.

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Thursday, August 25, 2005

Sand Springs, Oklahoma

From Oklahoma City‘s of August 25, 2005
Osage County Shooting Said To Be Self-Defense

Osage County authorities said a shooting northwest of Sand Springs that left one man dead appears to be self-defense and no charges are expected.

Investigators said Larry Cunningham was shot and killed after pulling a gun and firing a shot during an argument with men who had gone to the home of Cunningham's girlfriend to pick up a motor home.

Undersheriff Lou Ann Brown said the argument was apparently over the sale or financing of the motor home.

The name of the man who fired the fatal shot hasn't been released.
Houston, Texas

From Houston’s of August 25, 2005
Mother who blamed son not guilty of murder

A Houston mother who initially blamed her 9-year-old son for the shooting death of her boyfriend was found not guilty of murder Thursday.

Erika Lynn Ruiz, 30, later admitted she shot Jose Flores Martinez but said she did it to protect herself and her son.

Jurors apparently believed her story.

The son, now 10, calmly told jurors Monday that he saw Martinez grab his mother's hair, force her head into a door and slam her body to the floor before she shot him last June.

He testified that his mother ran to the bedroom and grabbed a gun. Martinez followed her toward a patio door where Martinez told Ruiz to give him the gun, the boy said. When the man continued advancing, she shot him once in the head and he fell to the floor, the boy said.

He said his mother initially blamed the shooting on him when friends came to see what was wrong. But he told police the truth after spending the night in custody.

Ruiz's attorney, Alvin Nunnery, told jurors that Ruiz was protecting her son and was "lawfully justified" in shooting Martinez.

She asked her son to take the blame "out of desperation, fear, cowardice, whatever you want to call it," Nunnery said.

Police confirmed they had responded to several domestic calls at the house.

Ruiz, a security guard at Sharpstown High School at the time of the shooting, could have gotten up to 99 years in prison if convicted.

It's not clear if she will face separate charges for lying about her son's involvement in the shooting.
Jeanerette, Louisiana

From the LaFayette Daily Advertiser of August 25, 2005
St. Mary man killed after break-in

Deputies are investigating the death of a 31-year-old Jeanerette man, who was shot when he attempted to break into his ex-wife's home late Tuesday night, officials said Wednesday.

St. Mary Parish Sheriff David Naquin said Anthony Sparrow died from multiple gunshot wounds he sustained during the confrontation.

Naquin said the incident occurred shortly before midnight in the 1100 block of La. 318 in Jeanerette. Sparrow, who was armed with a gun, allegedly broke into the home and was confronted by another man, who also was armed.

"It was apparent that there was an exchange of gunfire. The guy in the house wasn't hurt," Naquin said, and neither was the ex-wife.

After the shooting, Sparrow fled to his car and drove a short distance down the road before he ran off into a ditch on Moresi Road, Naquin said. When deputies located his vehicle shortly afterward, they found him dead inside.

Naquin said the case is still under investigation but that "it certainly appears that the gentleman that was inside the house acted in self defense. I don't think there's a whole lot of question about that."

Naquin said Sparrow and his ex-wife had had domestic problems in the past and that they had both filed charges against each other.
Shreveport, Louisiana

From Shreveport‘s of August 24, 2005
Fork is weapon of choice in armed robbery attempt

In an attempt to get the clerk to fork over the cash, a robber held up a convenience store Wednesday afternoon .. with a fork. It happened at the Food Mart on Hearne and Blanchard in Shreveport. The would-be robber came at the clerk with the fork, wrapped up to look like a gun. When the clerk realized the weapon was a fork, she grabbed a bat from behind the counter, hit the robber and chased him outside. That's when a man pumping gas pulled out a gun and held the robber until police arrived. Police promptly arrested Drrick (sic) Dwayne Franklin and charged him with attempted armed robbery.
Los Angeles, California

From the Contra Costa Times of August 24, 2005
15-year-old burglar shot by South LA woman dies at hospital

A 15-year-old burglary suspect died Wednesday, a day after being shot by a woman who told police she returned to her South Los Angeles home to confront a tire iron-wielding boy in her house.

The shooting took place about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday when Mary Ann Talley, 59, returned to her home after her daily walk, police said in a statement. When Talley entered her home, a young burglar confronted her with a tire iron and she shot him with a handgun she keeps for protection.

The boy was taken to a hospital where he died Wednesday, said Officer Jason Lee, a police spokesman.

The boy's identity was not released.

Talley was not injured in the incident.

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office was investigating to determine if any charges should be filed, Lee said.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Cheltenham, Pennsylvania

From Philadelphia’s of August 24, 2005
Men Attempt To Rob Brinks Armored Car

Robbers Used Mace On Brinks Truck Driver

A daring robbery attempt in front of a Cheltenham bank Wednesday targeted an armored Brinks car.

The robbery took place in front of the Woori America Bank at Cheltenham Avenue and 2nd Street.

"All of a sudden, there was a shot, she tells everybody to hit the floor, which they did, and I ran over to the counter to see what was going on," said Larry McGhee, a witness to the robbery.

"Two black males approached the guard -- one on foot, one on a bike. They both were armed with guns," said Lt. Kevin O'Brien, of the Cheltenham police.

Police said that the Brinks armored truck driver fired his gun twice at the two men who he said tried to rob him.

Police said that the men didn't use the guns. Instead, the robbers used Mace on the driver of the armored car and grabbed two bags of money.

"I saw the Brinks guy pointing his gun down the street, firing. (He) turned and grabbed a bag and threw it up in the truck and then turned again and fired," McGhee said.

Police said the robbers dropped the money and jumped into a waiting Jeep. They left behind the bike and the money. Investigators searched the sewers to see if either man dropped their gun, but they came up empty.

Although several shots were fired, nobody was hit during the robbery. Cheltenham and Philadelphia police have been asked to be on the lookout for a red Jeep with gold trim and tinted windows, which is the suspected getaway vehicle.
Croyden, Pennsylvania

From Philadelphia’s of August 24, 2005
Store Shooting on Bristol Pike

An attempted robbery and shooting left a Bucks County store owner, a customer, and one of the alleged robbers with bullet wounds.

It happened Tuesday afternoon around 2pm at Station Check Cashing and Pawn Shop on Bristol Pike in Croyden, Bristol Township.

Melissa Sauer, an employee at the store, spoke exclusively to Action News about what happened. She says her boss was showing a customer how to work a DVD player when two men walked in.

Melissa Sauer/Pawn Shop Employee: "They walked around the display cases and started... lifted up his shirt and started trying to pull out a gun and it kind of got stuck in his pants."

Melissa says that gave her enough time to run behind and lock an iron security door to the back of the shop where she called police.

"They were banging on the door for a couple of seconds and then gunshots, like 15 to 20 gunshots I heard."

And investigators say the suspects were not doing all the shooting.

Lt. Chick McGuigan/Bristol Twp. Police: "They exchanged gunfire with the owner. They both fled the store. One of them was wounded and one was not."

Police were on the scene in moments and captured the suspects trying to get to their get-away car about two blocks away on Charles Avenue.

Meantime, Melissa walked out to find shattered glass and her boss wounded on the floor. He called out saying...

"'Melissa call 911! I've been shot.' So I called 911...I realized our customer was also shot."

Two individuals are in custody. One suspect has been injured and is hospitalized. The customer is also hospitalized in critical condition.
From the Trenton, NJ Trentonian of August 26, 2005
DA: Shootout victim an accomplice

The hapless person who was inside the Station Check Cashing and Pawn Shop during Wednesday’s shootout has turned out to be an accomplice in the botched attempted robbery.

District Attorney Diane Gibbons identified the other person in the pawn shop when the shots rang out as Vitaly Liberman, 34, a white male, of Rutland Street in Philadelphia.

"It became clear during the investigation that the customer inside the Check Cashing Station inspecting video equipment was there for a different purpose," Gibbons said yesterday.

"He is, in fact, a confederate of the two men who attempted to rob the store. (Liberman) was inside to make sure the two people who were inside the bulletproof booth to come out so they could be robbed."

Once they were tipped off by Liberman via cell phone that the employees were out of the booth, Philadelphia residents Walter Earl Leon, 19, and Pedrita Moreta, 21, with a black substance of their faces to make it look as if they had mustaches, stormed into the pawn shop located at 721 Bristol Pike at around 2 p.m., Gibbons said.

Moreta opened fire and store owner Firas Nusire probably returned the fire, police surmise.

"It was quite a shootout inside that store," Gibbons said.

"We will have to investigate which bullets went where."

In the end, Nusire was shot in the elbow, Moreta was shot in the left abdomen, Liberman sustained gun shots to the right shoulder and right thigh and display cases, front glass door and more was shattered by bullets.

"There were a lot of shots fired in a small space," said Lt. Chick McGuigan, police spokesman.

"We don’t know how many shots were fired."

Leon and Moreta were captured minutes later in the back seat of a 1998 Dodge Intrepid on nearby Belmont Avenue.

Police found the keys to the car in Liberman’s pocket after being found lying on the floor of the pawn shop, tipping investigators off to the ruse.
Claremont, Illinois

From (IN) Terre Haute’s of August 23, 2005
Home Invasion

Violence calls on a small Wabash Valley town.

One person is dead and 2 others are seriously injured following a home invasion in a small town in Richland County, Illinois.

Early Tuesday morning authorities were called to the community of Claremont just east of Olney.

There they found a bloody scene in a quiet community.

Violence paid a wake-up call to the sleepy town of Claremont, Illinois.

Investigators worked the scene that claimed the life of 20-year-old Joshua Bennett, a soldier on leave from out of town, who was visiting his family.

"I believe he was in the military and he was visiting his mother at the residence," said Richland County Coroner Randy Kistler.

Bennett was pronounced dead at the scene.

He was stabbed to death.

"there were 2 men that broke into the house," said Kistler, "and I'm not sure what happened after that."

Neighbors in the close community wouldn't go on camera about what happened, but the do say they were shocked and surprised because what happened in the house was extremely violent.

Not only was Bennett killed, but his mother was also stabbed.

A third person in the house got a gun and shot one of the attackers.

The other fled the scene, but was later captured and taken to the Richland County Jail.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Greece, New York

From of August 23, 2005
Witness Breaks Code Of Silence

Police call it the "code of silence"--witnesses of crimes who don't speak up, some because they are afraid, others don't want to get involved. But, there is another side.

A man from Irondequoit not only helped police solve one crime, his actions may have prevented another from even happening.

When Mark Rothfuss and his buddy pulled into the Greece Mini Mart at 9:00 p.m. last November 28, they had only one thing on their mind--gas up and get to the hunting lodge. But while his friend was inside paying, Rothfuss saw another car pull up.

He noticed one man proceeded to inch forward and look at the store suspiciously while the car pulled away from the pump. Then, he realized the driver held a gun in his right hand.

What he didn't know is that the pistol was allegedly used earlier in the night to commit another crime. Two women were robbed at gunpoint outside Brueggers Bagels on Monroe Avenue. One was brutally beaten with the butt of the gun and had to be hospitalized.

Fearing he was about to be caught in the middle of an armed robbery, Mark reached for his hunting rifle.

"I kind of picked it up and set it on my lap. Mostly my concern was on them, but I figured if they did see the gun, they would be worried enough and would decide not to rob the store," he said.

Police say the two men in the car fled suddenly. No one knows for sure why. Mark alerted the clerk who called 911.

Terrell Wilson later admitted his role in the alleged crimes. The other man, Richard Rosa, is currently on trial. Rothfuss testified on Tuesday along with the two female victims.

Both men have extensive police records.

Lt. Steve Chatterson of the Greece police said, "Because of that report, police officers responded. They found the vehicle, recovered the weapon, and two dangerous criminals were taken off the streets."

Nine months later, Mark Rothfuss knows two things. He did the right thing by getting involved. But, he said, the next time, he might do it a little differently.

"My gun wasn't loaded. My bullets were in the back of the van. If something had happened I would have hightailed it and run," he said.
Mandan, North Dakota

From the Grand Forks Herald of August 23, 2005
Two men shot at Mandan mobile home park

A man shot two people at a mobile home park here after he was asked to help a woman who had a drink thrown on her, police say.

Mandan Police Chief Dennis Rohr said a 28-year-old man was shot in the stomach and a 20-year-old man was shot in the leg. Both men are from Bismarck. Rohr said their injuries were not life-threatening.

Police were called to the Countryside complex shortly after midnight Monday. Rohr said both of the shooting victims were intoxicated, and one of them "threw a drink on a woman and, of course, that led to a disturbance."

Rohr said the woman began banging on a neighboring mobile home, asking for help. A 58-year-old man "went outside and had a gun on him," Rohr said. "One of the men sucker-punched him."

The neighbor then fired two shots from a .38-caliber pistol, Rohr said.

The man and the two shooting victims were taken to a Bismarck hospital.

"The 58-year-old man was complaining of heart and chest pains," Rohr said.

The case has been turned over to the Morton County state's attorney. Rohr said he did not know if charges would be filed against the shooter.

"Detectives are looking at how provoked he was or if he shot in self-defense," the chief said.
Horseshoe Bay, Texas

From the Marble Falls Highlander News of August 23, 2005
Man fatally shot in HSB

A California man was shot to death early Thursday morning after attempting to enter the home of his son and ex-wife.

At approximately 5:30 a.m. Thursday, officers from the Horseshoe Bay Police Department were called to Granite Shoals Street in regards to a man breaking into a residence there. Upon arrival, officers found a 33-year-old white male, Brandon Joseph Steele of Palm Desert, Calif., dead from an apparent gunshot wound.

Officers had responded to the same location approximately an hour earlier when the resident called and said she thought her ex-husband was trying to enter the residence from the back yard. Officers searched the area around the residence and were unable to find anyone in the area, having returned to the location several other times prior to the break-in in attempt to find the subject.

The resident, Erica Renee Verette, 30, of Granite Shoals Street in Horseshoe Bay, confirmed she was the former wife of the victim and said she had just returned to the residence after being out of the country for several days. Her ex-husband came to Horseshoe Bay from Palm Desert after returning their 5 year-old son he had been keeping in California since June.

Verette said her ex-husband had been drinking and became belligerent and uncontrollable earlier in the evening and she had called her father to take him back to Austin to stay the night. Officers pieced together information leading them to believe that the victim jumped out of the vehicle and called a cab to bring him back to HSB. After returning to the residence, the victim allegedly broke a window in the bedroom of the home and entered while the ex-wife and her boyfriend were there.

According to the information officers received, the victim began screaming he was going to harm them. The 5 year-old son was reported to have been in the bedroom as well. After Steele entered, the boyfriend, Raymond Rex Bumpus, 28, of Lampasas ,reportedly fired several times at the victim during the ensuing altercation. Officers recovered a .22-caliber handgun at the scene.Investigators are awaiting an autopsy to determine actual cause of death and number of times and locations on the body where the victim was shot. EMS personnel were called to the scene and advised they did not detect vital signs; Justice of the Peace Rudy Cunningham arrived, pronounced the subject dead, and ordered an autopsy of the body.

Horseshoe Bay Police Chief Bill Lane said that in addition to his investigators, he has requested the assistance of Texas Ranger Sgt. Joey Gordon due to the nature of the investigation.

The investigation is continuing and investigators will be referring the case to the District Attorney's Office for an assessment of possible charges. Lane speculated that due to the circumstances surrounding the shooting he would anticipate the matter being referred to a grand jury to determine if, and what, charges might be filed.
Lubbock, Texas

From Lubbock‘s of August 22, 2005
Father and Son Catch Thief the Old Fashioned Way

Dale Rowin, co-owner of Tom's Tree Place tells NewsChannel 11 "We are a family owned business. We work hard for what we've got and we're gonna protect it with all we've got." A few weeks ago Dale noticed a hose left over a fence at Tom's Tree Place maintenance garage and then he started taking notice of tire tracks. He explains, "I smoothed out the dirt to watch for tracks and sure enough I found tracks where they were coming, filling up, and going on."

Dale set up surveillence and discovered thieves were prying open the lock to his gate, and filling their tanks with his diesel. That's when he recruited his son Josh for a stake out. He recalls, "We set out Thursday night all night, Friday night all night and Saturday night we were out here and about 2:00 Sunday morning we had a guy come in with his lights off." Josh adds, "Dad was sleeping because it was my turn to watch and I saw a truck come rolling down the street. I woke dad up. The adrenaline started pumping. My legs were shaking a little bit and I was pretty nervous."

Dale and Josh waited patiently behind a tree to catch the thief red handed. They slowly moved closer, and when the thief placed the nozzle in his tank, they cocked their shotguns. Josh says, "We caught him by surprise and he jumped in his trucked and started the ignition." Dale says, "I shot one of his rear tires out on his truck and I ran around the other side of the truck. The passenger door was unlocked so I got in and got him distracted long enough for my son to get the key out of the truck."

Dale and Josh got their man out of the truck and and called police. Police say his name is Brandon Hogue of Lubbock. He tried to run one more time but Josh quickly tackled him. Authorities were there within minutes. Josh recalls, "I could hear their sirens coming." and he adds he was glad to see the officer. Dale says, "He said he almost started laughing. He said there were two guys with shotguns and one was on his knees and he said every one looked pretty afraid."

Dale and Josh are thinking Bandit the watchdog may need some help, since he slept through the whole ordeal. Dale says, he will continue surveillance as a back up.

As for Hogue, turns out this is not the first time he has stolen from Tom's Tree Place. The Rowins also accuse Hogue of stealing a credit card from the company. That case will soon go before the grand jury. In this recent case, he's charged with burglary of a building.
Pine Bluff, Arkansas

From Little Rock’s of July 11, 2005

Police are still trying to sort out a bizarre shooting in Pine Bluff. It happened around 12:45 this afternoon. Police say two men got into an argument over a woman in the 1900 block of E. 10th St.

One man reportedly brought a crowbar to a residence, where he was then shot twice by the occupant. The man`s injuries were not severe.

Police have not made an arrest yet. They are still trying to determine if the shooter acted in self-defense.
No subsequent stories about this incident were found.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Jacksonville, Florida

From of August 20, 2005
Minister wounds 2 in shootout

He agonizes over shooting brothers at Grand Park football field; their mother says, 'Tell him I am thankful.'

Sixty-three-year-old grandfather Joe Dixon clutched a Bible as he sat in his Jacksonville home Friday and, after a sleepless night, asked himself yet again:

"Why did I do this? Why did this happen? I'm a preacher. I'm a Christian. I try to do things right. I don't like to see people get hurt."

A short drive away, two brothers, one 17 and the other 18, were in hospital beds at Shands Jacksonville. One was fresh from the operating room, the other being prepped for the same treatment: surgery to implant a pin in his leg after police said a bullet from Dixon's gun tore into it Thursday.

Police arrested Dimitri Lamar Gauldin, 18, of the 4800 block of Walcott Avenue, and Devin Lavaughn Gauldin, 17, of the 4900 block of Campenella Drive, charging both with aggravated assault. The older brother also faces a second felony of firing a gun from a vehicle in public.

The shooting on the football field at Grand Park on Henrietta Street came as more than two dozen children practiced -- Dixon's 9-year-old grandson and the brothers' 11-year-old sibling among them.

After a pushing match that witnesses said involved the brothers and at least one football coach, police said the brothers took out guns and fired at an unidentified person with whom it's believed they wanted to settle a score.

The gunfire sent cheerleaders, football players, parents and coaches scrambling. Dixon himself left, helping his grandson into his vehicle while noticing the gunmen walking back to their black Crown Victoria just a few yards away.

Dixon, a Bethel Baptist Institutional Church preacher who has a concealed weapons permit, told his grandson to hit the floor of their Toyota Sequoia.

Then he made the choice he lived over and over Friday.

"I went toward their car and told them, 'You're not going anywhere,'" Dixon said Friday, recalling how he showed the teens his gun.

Then they started shooting, Dixon said, with one bullet hitting his vehicle.

So he returned fire, with a bullet finding its mark in Dimitri's leg, who fell out of the now-fleeing Crown Victoria.

Dixon said he made the man drop his gun before the car circled back.

But Dixon had time to reload and as Devin scooped his brother off the ground, the grandfather had words for the younger brother as he held them both at gunpoint.

"I told him, 'Both of you all are going to stay here until the police get here.'"

But Devin tried to grab the gun Dixon had made Dimitri toss away. So Dixon squeezed off another round, which struck Devin in the leg.

As sirens wailed in the distance, the Crown Victoria sped away, with, police believe, three other men inside.


Sunday, August 21, 2005

San Leandro, California

From the San Francisco Chronicle of August 21, 2005
Pot club robbery ends in shooting

A San Leandro neighborhood was on edge Saturday after a brazen daytime robbery and shootout at a medical marijuana club that led to the death of an 18-year-old Oakland man.

Alameda County sheriff's investigators were still searching for three suspects after five men -- several armed with semiautomatic rifles and pistols -- stormed the medical marijuana club at 16360 Foothill Blvd. on Friday and exchanged gunfire with the store owner.

The shooting happened just before the pot club was due to open at noon, said sheriff's Sgt. Linda Thuman. The owner was inside with one other employee, she said, when they heard loud footsteps on the roof. Five men then forced the store owner at gunpoint to open the safe before they made off with an untold amount of money and pot, she said.

As the men left, the owner got a gun from a hiding place, followed the men outside and demanded that they "freeze." That's when the intruders opened fire, according to Thuman. The club owner fired back, mortally wounding one.

The intruder, whom the Alameda County coroner's office identified Saturday as DeMarco Lowrey of Oakland, was pronounced dead at Children's Hospital Oakland, where his accomplices dropped him off after the melee, Thuman said.

"It scares me," said one nearby business owner. "It scares my employees. Pretty soon, it might scare my customers. All my customers are against them being here. It's too close to the houses where they live."
Montgomery County, Texas

From the Montgomery County Courier of August 21, 2005
Intruder killed by resident of home

A home invasion on Friday night left one man dead and police trying to determine his identity. It was around 1 a.m. when the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office received a call regarding a shooting in the 14200 block of Wildwood Drive in the Lake Wildwood subdivision.

According to Lt. Darrel Conn, with the MCSO detectives division, officers arrived to find a Hispanic male lying in the yard dead from an apparent gunshot wound.

Conn said the home is owned by an elderly man and his wife, who were home when the dead man allegedly decided to walk in. He said the homeowner told officers he was awake playing video games when an unknown male holding a beer bottle walked into the home through the front door. He is described as a Hispanic male, between 30 and 35.

The homeowner confronted the man and told him to get out of his house. Conn says the intruder went outside, but remained on the premises and went to the back yard. He says the homeowner then retrieved a revolver from inside the house before going outside to look around his property. When the elderly man discovered the intruder in the backyard, a struggle ensued and the intruder was shot at least once in the chest.

Conn says the dead man had only one piece of identification on his person, which does not appear to be his. There was no immediate way of determining his identity. The homeowner will not face charges.
Charlotte, North Carolina

From of August 21, 2005
Gas station clerk shoots suspect

A convenience store clerk shot a man who was trying to rob the store early Sunday morning.

Witnesses called police after a man entered the Express Mart on the 3400 block of Wilkinson Boulevard around 6:40 a.m. They said a confrontation was going on between the clerk and the man on the property.

“We do know that the clerk fired shots in self-defense and one of the rounds did strike the suspect,” said Sgt. Steve Huber, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Freedom Division.

The man fled from the store on foot, but police tracked him down just a few blocks away. With the help of a canine unit, they had the man in custody in under a half hour.

“We were searching for him and fortunately for us when he got to wherever he was going he realized that he had been shot and he ended up calling the police to report that he had been shot,” Huber said.

The suspect was transported to the hospital but his injuries are not life-threatening. Police said he faces charges for attempted robbery and could face additional charges.

The store clerk sustained minor injuries during the incident. He received treatment from paramedics at the scene.

Police said store clerks are allowed to carry a gun as long as they have permission from the store owner. Witnesses said the clerk not only had a gun, but was also wearing a bulletproof vest.

John Kennedy, an employee at another service station on Wilkinson Boulevard, said clerks have to be careful.

“If it’s something you can afford and have access to, if you are a store clerk, it would be money well-spent,” Kennedy said of the vest.

Police said they understand why robbers are drawn to such stores.

“You are working in a location with money that is open 24 hours a day, and those that want the money and they know you are open on Sunday morning – the suspects naturally go where the money is,” Huber said.

The incident was not the first time police have responded to a call to the store. Police reports show officers have been called there 51 times since the start of the year.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Wamac, Illinois

From the August 17, 2005 Morning Sentinel:
Jaime Matthew Evilsizer, 19, of Brookside Trailer Court was taken to St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital for treatment of wounds to his abdomen and thigh, police said.

A hospital spokeswoman said Tuesday afternoon that Evilsizer was admitted. His condition was not listed. One report stated that he was admitted to the hospital’s intensive care unit, although this was not confirmed by hospital officials.

Wamac police said Evilsizer was shot by Roy J. Miller, 76, who lives on the property where Evilsizer allegedly was causing a disturbance.

Marion County State’s Attorney Matt Wilzbach said Tuesday afternoon that he had just received preliminary verbal reports on the incident and was not sure what charges might be filed against Evilsizer.

Wilzbach also said he had not filed charges against Miller and would review the circumstances that led to the shooting to determine if any charges would be filed.

Wamac police said Evilsizer allegedly beat on Miller’s garage door and did some damage to Miller’s van, which was parked in front of the garage, under a carport. They said Evilsizer allegedly damaged Miller’s satellite dish beyond repair and then went to Miller’s front porch and started beating on the door.

They said Miller told the suspect to leave, but Evilsizer started beating on Miller’s truck, at which point Miller allegedly opened his front door and fired seven shots out the door, two of which struck Evilsizer on the abdomen and thigh. They said the weapon used was a .22-caliber pistol.

They said Evilsizer left the property and went to the 600 block of Wabash Avenue, where he allegedly struck an unidentified male with a board. When a Wamac police car arrived, Evilsizer reportedly rushed the police car and started beating on the passenger side window before heading north on Wabash Avenue and then west on Peach Street.

They said the officer caught up with Evilsizer again, and the suspect swung at the squad car, hitting and damaging a spotlight. When the officer opened the door, Evilsizer allegedly grabbed it, damaging the door before he fell to the ground. He then reportedly got up and went down an alley.

At this point, three Centralia police officers arrived as backup help, and they helped take Evilsizer into custody in the 600 block of South James Street, Wamac police said.

They said Evilsizer tried to pull off his belt and screamed, “Come get me,” after which a Centralia police officer pepper-sprayed him, and Evilsizer collapsed.

An ambulance arrived, and Evilsizer continued to resist police and ambulance crews, police said. He was taken to the hospital and administered drugs to calm him down, police reported.

Initial urinalysis at the hospital showed he had traces of methamphetamine and cannabis in his system, as well as a blood alcohol level of .195, which is about three times the limit at which a person is considered to be legally intoxicated, according to police.

“I have no doubt that this elderly gentleman feared for his safety,” the state’s attorney said of the shooting.
Dothan, Alabama

From the August 19, 2005 Dothan Eagle:
Two juveniles and an 18-year-old were arrested after a man found them in his Balfour Drive home and held them at gunpoint until police arrived.

Tommy Gilbert, 18, was arrested Thursday night and charged with third-degree burglary and second-degree possession of marijuana.

The juveniles were also charged.

According to Dothan Police Capt. Nick Monday, the three teens kicked in the door of the residence and entered the home in order to smoke drugs.

The home was being remodeled at the time and according to the owner, Sammy Walker, it had been broken in to before.

Monday said Walker went to check on the home Thursday night when he noticed the door had been forced open.

"When he went inside he smelled marijuana smoke and found them," Monday said.

Walker was armed with a shotgun and held the three until police arrived.
Hamilton, Ohio

From March 7, 2005 WCPO channel 9:
A Hamilton homeowner says he kept a burglar at gunpoint until sheriff's deputies arrived to make an arrest.

Deputies say the homeowner came home to find Christopher Reed sitting on the floor in the front part of their home on Sarasota Street in Hamilton last week.

The man got his weapon and held Reed until deputies got there.
Wasilla, Alaska

From the City of Wasilla press releases:
On August 7, 2005, at approximately 2257 hours, Wasilla Police responded to 1401 Vaunda Avenue for a report of a homeowner who was holding a burglar at gunpoint. Investigation revealed the homeowner, Robert Locke, age 23, of Wasilla had come home and discovered a front window open which had been closed when he left. He approached the side of the residence and confronted a 15 year old male from Wasilla. The subject complied with Locke’s orders to stop and lay down on the ground. Locke then called police.

The juvenile had approximately $500.00 in jewelry, cash and coin, beer, prescription narcotics, and other items on his person. Also taken was a $1500.00 laptop computer. It was discovered two other subjects had also been involved with the burglary; a 17 year old male from Wasilla and Michael Goerdt, age 18, of Wasilla. The juveniles were taken to the Mat-Su Youth Facility. The 15 year old was charged with Burglary, Theft, and Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance; the 17 year old was charged with Burglary and Theft; and Goerdt was remanded to Mat-Su Pre-Trial on charges of Burglary and Theft. Goerdt’s bail was set at $2500.00.
South Toledo, Ohio

From the August 20, 2005 Toledo Blade:
A South Toledo business owner apparently shot a man attempting to break into his sheet metal fabricating shop through a roof vent last night. The man fled, leaving a blood trail, a work glove, and tools on the roof, police said.

Thomas Lloyd, 58, the business owner, told police he heard noises coming from the roof of the building that houses his residence and Great Lakes Standard Manufacturing Inc., 2970 Airport Hwy., at about 7 p.m. He got a shotgun, went to the shop area of the two-story building, and spotted a man entering feet first from the vent, police said.

Mr. Lloyd repeatedly told the man, “Stop and get out or I’ll shoot,” but the man continued coming through the vent. Mr. Lloyd fired one shot, and the man reversed course, climbed back onto the roof, and fled, police said.
Edgewood, Pennsylvania

From the August 20, 2005 Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
An Edgewood man was shot and critically wounded early Friday when he went outside his home to check on what set off the burglar alarm and was confronted by a gunman.

The intruder, who knows the victim, also was shot in the incident at 12:08 a.m. in the 500 block of Edgewood Avenue, Allegheny County Police Assistant Superintendent James Morton said.


Abram and Robinson have known each other for several years, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed to support the charges. The document does not give a reason for Robinson's being outside the home.

About 20 minutes after Abram was shot, county police were called to Mercy Hospital, where Robinson was taken by a friend.

Robinson told police he was shot by a passing motorist as he walked along Swissvale Avenue near his home.

However, a witness told police that Robinson was seen lying over a small hillside near Edgewood Towne Square, a short distance from where Abram was shot.

Blood was found on the sidewalk near Abram's home and a .38-caliber handgun was found at the base of a fence near the Edgewood Towne Square complex.

Court documents show that Robinson has a history of arrests for assault and robbery and drug and firearms violations.
New Port Richey, Florida

From the August 13, 2005 Tampa Tribune:
Gerard Taylor was at home, playing his guitar upstairs, when he heard noises coming from downstairs Friday.

``That's when I got my gun,'' the 60-year-old said.

He went downstairs about 2 p.m. to find a young man standing in his kitchen.

A few minutes before, the intruder apparently had pried open the back door of the Jasmine Drive home with a pitchfork he took from the toolshed.

``We just looked at each other for a second,'' Taylor said.

The intruder turned and ran. Taylor aimed and fired a single shot with a .38-caliber handgun. The man was hit in the leg as he headed out the back door.

``I ran down the street in my underwear chasing him with a gun in my hand,'' Taylor said.

The intruder stumbled as he ran to a car that was pulling away from the house. Taylor took aim again, then fired into the car's trunk.

``I could have killed him, easily,'' Taylor said.
Millcreek Township, Pennsylvania

From the July 24, 2005 Patriot-News:
An 83-year-old resident of Rod and Gun Road fired several shots at two men he thought were burglarizing his Millcreek Twp. house, but the men escaped in a truck. Millcreek Twp. police are trying to find the men.


Smith, who had been sitting on his porch, then went inside and saw that his screen window had been smashed. He grabbed his rifle and went back outside, seeing the truck with the two men leaving. He fired several shots with his .22-caliber rifle, police said.

Police said someone apparently tried to take Smith's wallet, which was found lying on the floor near the broken window.
Bryans Road, Maryland

From the April 24, 2005 Washington Post:
No criminal charges will be filed against a Bryans Road woman who fatally shot a man who broke into her home and attacked her boyfriend this month, Charles County authorities said.

The Charles County state's attorney's office made the decision after reviewing the Charles County Sheriff's Office's investigation of the shooting.

Authorities said Clayton Maurice Smith, 43, broke into the woman's home on Heather Drive early on April 6 by throwing a cinder block through the front window. Smith, of Bryans Road, and the woman had been involved in a relationship that ended in December.

Once Smith was inside, the sheriff's office said, he began assaulting the woman's boyfriend, a 54-year-old Washington man. Smith struck him several times in the head with a metal steering-wheel locking device that Smith had tied to his hand, investigators said.

When Smith would not stop hitting the man, the woman got a handgun and fired one shot. Smith died at the scene. Police were called to the residence just before 4 a.m. Authorities said the woman lawfully owned the handgun and kept it at her home.
Silver Spring, Maryland

From May 16, 2005 WJLA channel 7:
Layhill, Md. (AP) - Police say the Silver Spring homeowner who shot a suspected burglar used a properly registered gun.

The investigation is continuing, but authorities in Montgomery County (website - news) say the unidentified suspect apparently robbed another house 15 minutes earlier.

In that case, another homeowner found a man in front of his house on Eastway Drive. The man claimed to be looking for someone, then drove off in a red Geo. The homeowner soon realized someone broke in through an open window and ransacked a room.

Police moments later answered a call on Whitehaven Drive, where they say the suspect broke down the front door and came face to face with a gun-toting homeowner - who shot him in the hand and side.
Cottage Hills, Illinois

From the The Alton Telegraph of August 20, 2005
Cottage Hills brothers help catch gunman

When a wounded, "wanted" man came banging at Jimmy Harrison Sr.’s back door at 1 a.m. Aug. 11, the 57-year-old said he was ready -- with a gun.

Harrison knew that Derek K. Gilmer, 27, of Washington Park, was a fugitive from police, because he had been out looking for the man.

"I hunted him all evening in the woods behind my house," Harrison said. He said he wanted to find Gilmer so the fugitive wouldn’t break into his house and harm him and his brother, Danny, as they slept.

Harrison said he carried his gun as he combed woods and a creek area Wednesday, Aug. 10, near his home in the 200 block of West Drive in the Forest Homes area of Cottage Hills, east of Stanley Road.

He said he had called 911 earlier Wednesday when he saw the fleeing man in the area.

Harrison said police and deputies from the Madison County Sheriff’s Department and Illinois State Police gave up looking for Gilmer about 8 p.m. but that he continued his manhunt.

In the meantime, Gilmer apparently shot himself in the foot accidentally.

Gilmer then went looking for help at the door of the man who had been looking for him for hours. Harrison was outside at the time, having come back from his manhunt.

Gilmer, who could barely walk, crawled up to the porch, banged on the door and asked Harrison for a drink of water.

"He said, ‘Just call an ambulance,’" Harrison recalled. "I said, ‘Don’t move or else.’"

Harrison said the man probably did not know he was holding a gun in the dark. Harrison’s brother, Danny, who awoke when Gilmer banged on the door, stayed inside and called 911.

An ambulance and sheriff’s deputies rushed to Harrison’s home.

"The police wrestled him to the ground," Harrison said.

Harrison, who said he is partially disabled and weighs 149 pounds, said he was not afraid Gilmer would harm him.

"He ain’t getting a gun from me; I was an over-the-road truck driver. I’ve had some bad situations with people trying to shoot me."

Harrison said Gilmer was unarmed when he asked for help.

Lt. David Hayes, chief of detectives for the Alton Police Department, confirmed that Harrison called 911, leading to Gilmer’s capture, but he said Sheriff’s Department reports do not mention Harrison holding the fugitive at gunpoint.

"He called the Sheriff’s Department, and the Sheriff’s Department responded where they found a guy who was the victim of a gunshot wound to the foot," Hayes said. "At no time does (the report) say (Harrison) held (Gilmer) at gunpoint.

"There is no doubt Mr. (Danny) Harrison did assist in capturing Gilmer by notifying us," Hayes said. "He did the right thing. We worked in conjunction together and had a good resolution."


Friday, August 19, 2005

Quincy, Florida

From the Gadsen County Times of August 19, 2005
Alleged burglar caught in act

In a quiet neighborhood off Old Federal Road, south of the Quincy city limits, people go about their business daily. They love their families, their pets, they go to work, they pay their taxes, and they enjoy the rural life. They don't like having their homes burglarized. Lately it has been happenening all too frequently. Burglaries in the area have homeowners wary about leaving home, and law enforcement frustrated by being a few steps behind the criminals. Monday morning, everybody got a break. A homeowner, acting on a hunch, asked her supervisor if she could leave work to check on her home. She arrived home minutes after the burglar. He was still standing almost in her yard. Mario Curry, 22, had run out of time too, because in less than an hour later deputies had him in custody and at least three other burglaries had been solved. He is in the county jail charged with armed robbery, armed burglary of a dwelling, and grand theft. "I saw him on the property. When I walked into my house I knew immedately we had been robbed. Things were all over the floor and the bedroom door that is usually locked was open," said the homeowner, whom we will not identify. "I immediately called 911," she said. Then she grabbed her .357 magnum and went outside. She fired one round in the air and yelled for the man to stop. She tried to call 911 again and the man ran away. This time she fired five or six more shots in the air and yelled for him to stop. "He ran into the woods," she said. Later Monday morning authorities located one of the woman's tee shirts filled with coins, DVDs, a watch, and keys taken from a neighbor's home. She knew the burglar because he was the same man who rang her door bell Friday afternoon.

Houston, Texas

From of August 19, 2005
Police: Resident Opens Fire On 2 Intruders, Kills 1

Relatives Speculate Man Was Targeted Because Of Business He Owns

Police said a man grabbed his shotgun and killed one of two men after he said they busted into his southeast Houston apartment and opened fire, police told Local 2 Friday.

Officers with the Houston Police Department said a man and woman inside the apartment heard someone shouting and banging on the front door of the man's apartment on 75th Street near Harrisburg Boulevard at about 11:30 p.m. Thursday.

Investigators said as the resident retrieved his shotgun, the two men invaded the apartment and opened fire on him.

Police said that is when the resident fired back, fatally striking one of the intruders in the back. That man's identity has not been released.

"They confronted them in his living room. Shot once. Apparently one of the suspects shot back at him with a shotgun. The suspects ran out. One of them went downstairs and fell down before he died," Houston Police Department Sgt. L.A. Flores said.

The other man fled the scene.

Officers with HPD's Homicide Division are investigating the shooting. They have not said if the resident would be charged.

Relatives of the apartment residents told Local 2 the man owns a furniture business in the area and speculated that was the reason the intruders targeted him.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

San Augustine County, Texas

From Lufkin’s of August 17, 2005
San Augustine Jury Finds Woman Not Guilty Of Murdering Her Husband

A San Augustine county woman on trial for killing her husband has been found not guilty. Nina Conner was accused of shooting Williard Connor to death two years ago.

She claimed it was self defense, calling her relationship with her husband an abusive one. She said she had to do it or she would have been dead. The jury agreed.

"We were very pleased that the jury agreed with us that this extreme case of domestic violence justified the use of deadly force. It's a tragedy that a life was taken, but it came down to who's life it would be," says Defense Attorney Tim James.

The jury deliberated for nine hours Wednesday before reaching that verdict.
Bakersfield, California

From Bakersfield’s of August 17, 2005
Woman shoots intruder in leg

A woman defending her home shot a trespasser after two warning shots Wednesday afternoon. It happened on O Street around 2 p.m.

Police said a man who may have been on PCP was attacking two pitbulls outside the woman’s back yard.

The assailant was allegedly beating the dogs with a belt when he awakened a couple sleeping inside.

The woman, who is said to be in her 40’s, came to the back yard and asked the suspect to leave. Police said he then came at the couple and pushed the elderly man to the ground.

The woman fired two warning shots into the air before shooting the man in the thigh.

“It sounds like the occupants life was legitimately in danger,” said Det. Jack Smith from the Bakersfield Police Department. “They didn't know who he was he seemed to be under the influence of some sort of drug.”

“She was just pretty much trying to get the guy out of their yard,” said the woman’s son, Casey Jones. “She was scared.”

The Bakersfield Police department said when they arrived, the suspect was non-responsive. He was rushed to Kern Medical Center, where he is under arrest.

Investigators said the wound is not life threatening and no charges will be filed against the woman.

The suspect is facing assault charges, as well as breaking and entering.
Kansas City, Missouri

From the of August 18, 2005
Brother Of Man Shot By Homeowner Charged With Murder

A man has been charged with felony murder in the death of his brother earlier this month.

Police said Murrey L. Wynn, 19, and his brother, Quinton, 20, tried to rob a home in the 1600 block of Lawn on Aug. 5. The homeowner opened fire, striking Murrey Wynn. He was rushed to Truman Medical Center, but died.

Investigators said that since he died during the commission of a crime, his brother, Quinton, can be charged with his death.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Austin, Texas

From Austin’s of August 17, 2005
Man Fatally Shoots Girlfriend's Ex-Husband

In the Hill Country, a man is dead after an alleged domestic dispute and apparent break in.

Thirty-three-year-old Brandon Joseph Steele died Monday after being shot at a duplex on Granite Shoals Street. Authorities believe that he broke into his ex-wife's house through a bedroom window.

The woman, her boyfriend and a 5-year-old child were in that room. Steele allegedly threatened them.

The boyfriend told police that's when he shot Steele. The ex-wife claims he had come to the house earlier, intoxicated and belligerent.

"This is a situation which has all indications of being a self defense issue. Unfortunately, there was a life taken in this event, so we have to proceed with it as if it is a homicide," Chief Bill Lane of Horseshoe Bay said.

Autopsy results are pending.

Police have made no arrests.
Memphis, Tennessee

From Memphis’ of August 16, 2005
Memphis seniors fight back in home invasion

Two Memphis seniors took matters into their own hands and fought back against burglars, and an old Smith & Wesson will forever remind retired Naval Officer Bryant Green of his Tuesday morning ordeal.

He said it all began when his doorbell rang at 10 a.m., "I got up quickly and did not see anyone."

However, his 76 year old wife Gwyneth saw four men breaking into a backyard window of their West Crestwood house.

Bryant Green came out the front door, crept around his house and into the back courtyard where he saw one of the suspects with a shotgun.

Green said he and the young man exchanged a few rounds, but no one was hurt.

Gwyneth Green said she watched from inside in mortal terror, "I could see the smoke from the shotgun the fellow had...I was trembling so I couldn't stand."

The four med (sic) fled on foot and by car.

Memphis Police used their canine unit, patrol cars and a copter to search for the men, with no luck.

Neighbor John Rindin said he wants to start a community watch, "we need to be more proactive."

At the moment, police do not have a detailed description of the burglars or the get-away car, but they might have fingerprints.

The Greens said they hold no bad feelings. They are just grateful to be alive and will not let this crime run them out of their home of 46 years.
Addis, Louisiana

From the Baton Rouge Advocate of August 4, 2005
Addis man critical after being shot by ex-girlfriend

A domestic dispute in Addis over a couple's recent break-up landed one man in the hospital early this morning. The dispute came to a violent end when a woman shot her ex-boyfriend after he broke into her home.

Dedrick Broussard, 35, was shot on the shoulder and is in critical condition. Chief Ricky Anderson of the Addis Police Department said it was a case of a bitter break-up that led to frequent threats. Anderson said the woman had bought the gun recently because she feared for her safety.

According to police, Broussard sat on his ex-girlfriend's front doorstep, talking to her on a cell phone. She wouldn't let him inside, so he broke the door down. That's when shots were fired, and neighbor Angel Dix called 911.

Dedrick Broussard remains hospitalized in critical condition, but if his condition improves he will face charges for breaking into the home and for stalking. The name of Broussard's ex-girlfriend is being withheld, and Addis police say she will not be charged in the shooting because she was acting self-defense.
Cookeville, Texas

From the Longview News-JournalPublication of August 8, 2005
Ex-husband shot as he tries to break through door

A 41-year-old man was shot to death early Sunday morning when he tried to break into the house where his ex-wife was staying with another man.

Chief Deputy Miguel Larsen of the Titus County Sheriff's Office said officers found William Joe Baker lying on the front porch of Marty Crocker's residence on County Road 3435.

According to a news release, Baker went to Crocker's home seeking his ex-wife, Anita Baker, 41. Crocker called the police, saying that William Baker was hitting the door and threatening to kill them.

Larsen did not know the relationship between Crocker and Anita Baker. She and William Baker had been divorced almost a year, he said.

While deputies were en route to the scene, Larsen said the emergency call was disconnected. Crocker called back moments later and told the dispatcher he had fired his semi-automatic rifle multiple times through the door, hitting Baker in the head.

"We don't have an exact number" of shots, Larsen said. Baker's body has been sent to Dallas for an autopsy. Crocker was not taken into custody, Larsen added.

"My understanding is the investigators conferred with the district attorney, and the decision was made at that time not to take him into custody," he said.

According to the release, the District Attorney's office will review the case once the investigation is completed.
Jackson, Mississippi

From the Jackson Clarion-Ledger of July 10, 2005
Fatal shooting probed by JPD

Self-defense investigated in Saturday shooting of an unidentified 39-year-old

Jackson police say a man who shot and killed another man Saturday afternoon in west Jackson may have acted in self-defense.

The shooting death of the unidentified 39-year-old man came about 12 hours after Jackson Mayor Frank Melton issued an executive order following an unrelated shooting involving a 16-year-old boy.

Melton's order requires suspects who are charged with crimes in which they are accused of using weapons to injure people to be held without bond until a Jackson Municipal Court judge issues a bond.

But, Melton said, that probably won't apply to Nathaniel Rouser, 69, of 226 Vandergriff St., who is accused in the shooting death Saturday near Morson Road and Summer Place about 4:30 p.m.

The man's name was being withheld until his family can be notified, said Jackson police spokesman Robert Graham.
Investigators released Rouser following questioning.

Rouser was in a vehicle at or near the west Jackson intersection when he was approached by the man, Graham said. "The deceased was allegedly pointing a weapon at him," Graham said. "Rouser then produced his own weapon and shot the deceased in the chest."

The two men knew each other, Graham said. "Detectives believe that the incident stemmed from an earlier argument," he said.
No subsequent stories about this incident were found.

Monday, August 15, 2005

LaCrosse, Wisconsin

From the LaCrosse Tribune of June 8, 2005
City man stops truck burglary in progress

Having his truck broken into three times in the past month was too much for Brian Sidie.

So when Sidie saw someone in the cab of his pickup about 11 p.m. Monday, he took action.

While getting a drink in his kitchen that night, Sidie glanced outside to see a young man walking down the street.

He turned away, thinking it was a neighbor, but took one more look before going back to bed. This time, the young man was in his pickup.

Sidie grabbed his rifle and headed outside. "I came around the front of my truck and slapped my hand on the hood. He just shot up and looked at me," Sidie said. "I told him, ‘You aren't going anywhere.'"

Careful never to point the gun at the young man, Sidie pushed the pickup door closed and refused to let the man go.

Sidie's wife called La Crosse police, who said they arrived to find Daryl A. Sumlar, 17, inside the truck.

Sidie said he has lost more than $500 worth of property in the previous thefts. In this case, the intruder caused $200 in damage to Sidie's stereo system, police said.

Sumlar, of Sparta, Wis., was charged Tuesday with entry to a locked vehicle, criminal damage to property and disorderly conduct, all misdemeanors.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Dayton, Ohio

This story provides additional information about an incident first reported here.

From Dayton’s of August 9, 2005
Homeowner Fires Shot During Attempted Burglary

A Dayton homeowner defended his home and fired a warning shot when someone tried to break in, according to police. Now, officers said the shot struck the would-be burglar, who is telling them an unusual story about why he was trying to get into the home.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found a man shot in the lower leg. Officers talked with the homeowner, who said he woke up to hear a man trying to kick in the front door of the home.

Police said when the suspected burglar refused to stop trying to enter the home, the homeowner fired a shot through the lower portion of the door, trying to get the man to go away.

Investigators said the suspected burglar told them a strange story as to why he was desperately trying to break into the house. The man told officer that he just got released from prison for a sexual assault on a girl.

Sgt. Whitney Butler said, “He claims the girl’s family got together some males to chase him through the neighborhood as an act of retribution for his sexual assault.”

At this time, police said they do not have any way to verify the man’s story. The homeowner told police he did think he may have heard other people outside, but he did not know what the whole thing was about.

Officers do not plan to charge the homeowner, saying he was defending himself and his wife. Authorities said the man who got shot was arrested after being treated at a local hospital.
Reddick, Florida

From the August 10, 2005 Ocala Star-Banner:
REDDICK - Detectives have recovered an assault rifle they believe was used in Monday's double slaying during a botched home invasion robbery.

The Marion County Sheriff's Office said the semi-automatic Chinese SKS rifle was thrown from the suspects' vehicle as they fled the scene in Reddick.

On Monday night, Alisha C. Williams led investigators to the 7.62 mm rifle, which had been discarded near North Marion High School, said Capt. Dennis Strow, spokesman with the Sheriff's Office.

Williams is one of two people charged in the slaying.

Detectives are still investigating the shooting death of Roland Debron Jenkins, 36, who was found dead in his home early Monday morning. Investigators say Jenkins was killed in a struggle with armed suspect Eduardo Ballestero, 24, who also died in the robbery. A third suspect, Davon White, 23, sat in a vehicle outside.

Williams and White drove Ballestero to Munroe Regional Medical Center where he died of his injuries, investigators said.

Shortly afterward, Williams and White were arrested on charges of murder and home invasion. They remained in the Marion County Jail on Tuesday without bail.

There were a number of firearms found at the house, but the assault rifle was brought to the house by the three suspects, Strow said.

Tests will be performed to determine if both Ballestero and Jenkins were both shot by the rifle. Ballestero reportedly had two guns with him during the robbery attempt, according to an arrest affidavit.

It is not known if any of the other weapons at the house were used during the robbery, Strow said.

"The investigation continues," Strow said.


An autopsy conducted Tuesday by the Medical Examiner's Office revealed that both men died of a single gunshot wound. A bullet penetrated the upper right arm of Jenkins, and entered the torso. Ballestero was shot in the lower abdomen. During the investigation, detectives also found evidence of drugs in Jenkins' home and seized a large amount of cash, Strow said.

Tammy Washington, a family member of Jenkins, called the Star-Banner Tuesday to say that Jenkins was not involved with selling drugs.

"He was family-oriented, friendly and would give someone the shirt off his back."
Olympia, Washington

From August 10, 2005 KIRO-TV channel 7:
OLYMPIA, Wash. -- A man pulled a pistol on a car prowler here Tuesday morning and held him at gunpoint until police arrived, KIRO TV News reported.

Police credit the man with solving a string of car prowls and helping to recover more than $4,000 in stolen property.

Chuck Estes awoke Tuesday to find the roof of his wife's convertible slashed and her stereo system stolen.

Estes told KIRO TV News South Sound Bureau Chief Richard Thompson that, "One thing I can't stand in life is a thief."

Estes said he was driving through his neighborhood when he spotted a vehicle suspected in the theft from his wife's car.

Estes had a .44-caliber Magnum Smith and Wesson pistol with him. He approached the suspect's car, drew his gun and ordered the teenaged occupant to put his hands on the dashboard.

Estes called police who arrested the 16-year-old boy. They also arrested a 21-year-old man they say was an accomplice nearby.
A more detailed account at the August 14, 2005 Olympia Olympian:
Estes didn't keep the gun -- a revolver with a 6-inch barrel -- pointed very long, he said. He holstered it immediately after determining the suspect didn't pose a threat, he said.

"I made it very clear to stay in the car and that he was not at risk and that I was not a threat," said Estes, 40, who has a concealed weapon permit.

It was about 4 a.m., and Estes was on his way to work when he noticed someone had sliced into his wife's convertible to steal her stereo and speakers. He didn't think he had time to deal with it right away.

But as he headed down the street, he noticed two younger males climbing into a Volkswagen Rabbit loaded with electronics and other equipment. He thought it seemed suspicious and decided to stop. One suspect ran.

Holding his flashlight and gun, Estes approached the driver's side window and ordered the suspect to put his hands on the dashboard. Then he called 9-1-1.

"Hopefully that's the last time I'll have to pull it out of the holster," Estes said.
Costa Mesa, California

From the August 10, 2005 Orange County Daily Pilot:
Two men remained hospitalized Tuesday after being shot with a single bullet during a confrontation with a former landlord in Costa Mesa, police said.

The shooting occurred Monday night outside the landlord's home in the 3000 block of Donnybrook Lane. Police said one of the injured men and three acquaintances went to the landlord's home because of a dispute over missing property. Police are withholding all names.

The confrontation escalated, and the landlord drew a 9-millimeter handgun and shot one man in the shoulder. That bullet passed through him and hit a second man in the chest. Both men remained hospitalized Tuesday, but their injuries were not considered life-threatening. Police said their initial investigation indicated that the landlord fired in self-defense.
Orlo Vista, Florida

From the August 8, 2005 Orlando Sentintel:
Lorenzo Baker, 29, was shot in Orlo Vista and pronounced dead later at a hospital, officials said.

The incident began just before midnight. David Mathis, 20, said he was heading to a club with friends when four men forced them back into his mother's Orlo Vista home, demanding the keys to her shimmering green show car.

They pistol-whipped Mathis and a friend and forced seven people in the home onto the floor, demanding the car keys.

Mathis' brother, Alvin Johnson, managed to escape outside the home and called police.

Another car blocked the bright green Mercury Grand Marquis, and the thieves were not able to take it. They did take a set of show rims, crashing through the yard and taking a chunk out of the base of a tree in their haste to escape, family members said.

Larry Smith, 45, who was also in the house, said that after the thieves ran out, they heard shots.

The older brother of someone from the house was called and arrived in a red Ford Explorer to confront the suspects, Orange County sheriff's spokeswoman Barbara Miller said. The man, whose name was not released and who is not expected to face charges, exchanged fire with the suspects, she said.

Baker was shot while in the driveway.
Eustis, Florida

From August 8, 2005 WKMG channel 6:
Police in Eustis, Fla., continue to investigate a weekend home invasion that killed one man and injured another, according to Local 6 News.

Investigators said officers were called to a home on Hazard Avenue at about 9:15 p.m. Saturday after a man was found dead from gunshot wounds in a neighbor's yard.

After an investigation, the person found dead turned out to be one of two suspected home invaders, according to police.

A second man, the homeowner, was rushed to Orlando Regional Medical Center with a gunshot wound to the chest, Local 6 News reported. His condition was not known early Monday.

Detectives said it was not clear if the men shot each other, Local 6 News reported.

Investigators are searching for a second man involved in the crime.
Also from the August 8, 2005 Orlando Sentinel:
Earlier Saturday night, two armed men broke through the front door of a Eustis house on Hazzard Avenue in an apparent robbery attempt, Eustis police Lt. Danny Provencher said.

One of the four people inside tried to fight the intruders and was shot in the chest. The man, who police would not identify, was flown to Orlando Regional Medical Center and was listed in critical condition, he said.

Police said one of the attackers -- Mario Reeves, 27, of Winter Garden -- also was shot. Reeves was found dead about 40 yards from the house, but it was unclear who shot him, Provencher said.
Charleston, South Carolina

From the Charleston Post and Courier of August 14, 2005
(Requires free registration)
Man dies after bouncer fires gun outside club

2 wounded in incident employee, witnesses describe as self-defense

A North Charleston man died early Saturday and two others were injured after a club bouncer used a firearm to fend off attackers, police said.

Airrion Rogers, 24, of North Charleston, fired two shots at two men who were attacking him with baseball bats as he tried to break up a parking-lot brawl outside Esmeralda club at 1310 Remount Road, according to a police report.

As of Saturday night, no one had been arrested or charged in the incident, and police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the shooting, said North Charleston police spokesman Spencer Pryor. He said if there are any criminal charges in connection with the incident, they will be announced after detectives meet Monday.


Update: No charges for bouncer in shooting