Monday, October 31, 2005

San Antonio, Texas

From the October 30, 2005 San Antonio Express-News:
A teenager who was shot twice early Saturday told conflicting stories about how it happened, according to a police report.

The 14-year-old was treated for his injuries at University Hospital.

At around 1:30 a.m., police responded to a shooting call in the 900 block of Wildwood and found the teen lying on the ground beside a friend. The teen told police a gang had shot him, the report said.

But in the emergency room at University Hospital, police overheard the teen telling others he "got caught breaking into a house," the report said. Just before the shooting, police had responded to a burglary in which the homeowner shot at someone crawling into his window, according to the report.

The teen then told police he had been shot by a bald stranger on the street.
Montgomery, Alabama

From the October 31, 2005 Montgomery Advertiser:
A Montgomery man was killed Sunday night when a scuffle in an apartment complex parking lot turned deadly.

Charles Shuford, 19, died of gunshot wounds to the chest and neck, said Lt. Huey Thornton, a police spokesman. Although the 23-year-old shooter has been identified, police were not releasing his name this morning.

“It’s possible that the shooting was justifiable,” Thornton said.


Witnesses told detectives that the alleged shooter and his girlfriend were leaving a party inside the apartment complex when they were accosted by several men, including Shuford.

“Remarks were made toward the girlfriend,” Thornton said. “They were sexually explicit in nature.”

The woman’s boyfriend got into an argument with the men, who then allegedly attacked him, Thornton said. In the course of the struggle, the man pulled a Glock .357 and fired two shots, both of which hit Shuford.


Thornton said the case will likely go before a grand jury. Because of the circumstances, the slaying is not being investigated as a murder.
Battle Creek, Michigan

From Grand Rapids’ of October 31, 2005
Suspect & clerk involved in shoot-out during armed robbery

Police are looking for an armed robber who was involved in a shootout Saturday night in a Battle Creek store.

Police say the suspect, who wore a mask, came into the store with a gun just before 9:00 p.m. and demanded money. After getting the money, the clerk and the suspect began shooting at each other. Neither was shot and the suspect was able to get away.
Daytona Beach, Florida

From the Daytona Beach News of October 31, 2005
Man dies after breaking into home

A 44-year-old man who broke into a Mulberry Street house Sunday night, fought with its two residents and collapsed as police led him out in handcuffs died later at Halifax Medical Center, authorities said.

Paul and Shelly Laughman were in their house on the 600 block of Mulberry Street about 6:30 p.m. when a man punched their front door. Shelly ran to lock it, but the man kicked in a plastic window and clawed his way into her home.

"He had a crazy look in his eyes," Shelly said, "and he mumbled something that sounded like I'm not here to hurt you."

Shelly, 36, screamed for her Husband, who was sleeping in the other room. He dashed over and wrestled with the man in their living room. While the men were wrestling, Shelley called police and grabbed a shotgun from a closet.

Paul, 52, pinned the man on the floor and Shelly aimed the shotgun at him, she said.

Paul let the man up slowly and said to him, "We've called the police. We've got a gun. Just go."

The man stared at them for a moment; the shotgun still aimed at him.

The man then rushed at Paul again, the couple said. Shelly aimed the shotgun and pulled the trigger, but the safety was still on and the gun never fired. Eventually, Paul would need the help of a neighbor to subdue the man again.

Police officers entered the house and the man continued to fight with the officers as they took him into custody. Officers placed the man in handcuffs and were walking him to a patrol car when he collapsed, said police spokesman Sgt. Al Tolley. They performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the man and called in rescue workers. An EVAC ambulance took the man to Halifax where he was pronounced dead about 6:45 p.m..

"No weapon of any kind was used by police," said police Lt. C.H. Fordham at the scene.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Daytona Beach police will conduct an investigation as to the cause of the 44-year-old man's death, Tolley said. The man's name was withheld Sunday night until his family could be notified.

The Laughmans are left to wonder why he chose their house.

"I have no idea why he picked our yard," Shelly Laughman said, unnerved by the whole experience. "That guy could've killed us, and I would've killed him if I could get that safety off."
Anderson, South Carolina

From Greenville’s of October 30, 2005
Police Investigating Shooting Death Of Anderson Man

An Anderson man was shot and killed early Sunday morning, authorities said.

Vernon Honeycutt died around 2 a.m., roughly two hours after being shot on Sayre Street, said police.

Honeycutt died at Anderson Area Medical Center.

Police said a woman shot Honeycutt to stop him from beating her daughter.

"At this particular time, their investigation is indicating that the woman acted in self-defense," said Lt. Layton Creamer, pf the Anderson City Police Department.

Police are still investigating the case.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Springwater, New York

From Rochester’s of October 30, 2005
Springwater Man Shoots Intruder

A Livingston County man was shot early Sunday morning after trying to break into his estranged wife's house.

Sheriff's deputies say Joseph Kruchten, 44, tried to break into the house in Springwater. Police say Kruchten was warned by someone in the home to leave the property,.

hat's [sic] when police say Kruchten broke a window, then was shot by his estranged wife's son, Shane Quick.

Kruchten was taken to Noyes Memorial Hospital in Dansville with serious, but non-life threatening injuries.

No word on any charges
Youngstown, Ohio

From Youngstown’s The Vindicator of October 30, 2005
Man shoots apparent attacker

An elderly man shot a man who jumped him from behind as he was entering his house on the South Side, police report.

The suspect is in critical condition at St. Elizabeth Health Center.

Walter Swita, 83, told police he was entering his house at about 10:30 p.m. Friday after having parked his car across the street from the residence at 3003 South Ave.

He told police he has been parking across the street instead of around the back of his house since he was assaulted and robbed six weeks ago, the report said. He also told police he had been carrying a gun since that time.

The report said that as he unlocked his door and went in, the suspect grabbed him from behind. As Swita was falling to the floor, he took his gun from his pocket and shot his attacker once in the chest and once in the head, the report said.

A witness reported hearing two shots and seeing two men running across South Avenue to East Philadelphia.

When police got to Swita's house, they found him next to the phone where he'd called 911, and his attacker was lying on the floor in a pool of blood, the report said. Swita had a bump and a gash on his head and was taken to Beeghly Medical Center, where he was treated.

The 44-year-old suspect, who listed an East Philadelphia Avenue address, remained in critical condition late Saturday night, the hospital said.
From Youngstown’s of October 31, 2005
Youngstown Man Speaks Following Friday Shooting

An elderly Youngstown man says that his life changed forever Friday night. That's when he shot and killed an intruder at his South Avenue home.

“As a rule, I don't carry a gun. I don't want to shoot anyone,” said Youngstown resident Walter Swita.

But Friday night, that is exactly what Walter Swita did. As the 83 year old Youngstown man tells the story, blood from his alleged attacker still stains the carpet.

“I had a gun since World War II. I carry it only at night. From 8:30 to 10:30, I carry the gun,” Swita said.

Swida had been carrying a weapon and parking at a South Avenue business since he was beaten and robbed in the back yard of his home several weeks ago. As he crossed the street Friday night, the gun was ready.

“So I am walking and I see a guy hanging down there on the sidewalk and he starts moving fast,” Swita recalled. “I got one foot in the door and he shot up on my porch and grabbed me around the neck and I so I shot him.”

The man who fell to his carpet was 44 year old Benjamin Brooks, who lived a few blocks away. He did not survive.

For Swita, who has been here since his parents bought the house in the 1920's, the incident is life-changing. The World War II vet, who loved bowling and taking his sister to bingo, says he never felt he had to protect himself until now.

“You have to do what you have to do, you know,” Swita said.

But when leaving home is the next thing to do, he says that is not so easily done.

“When you are set in your ways, it is hard to move,” added Swita.

Youngstown's prosecutor Dionne Almasy says that she will not press charges against Swita. However, the county prosecutor still has the option.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Odessa, Texas

From the October 20, 2005 Odessa American:
Police have arrested two suspects in Tuesday’s failed robbery attempt at Gun Sport Ltd.

According to an OPD news release, two men entered the store Tuesday afternoon, and one pepper sprayed an employee.

The employee, whose name was being withheld, managed to keep one of the men from leaving the store by holding a gun on him, according to Sgt. Bob Forbus.

The other man reportedly fled on foot.

On Tuesday, police arrested Jameyl Loud Webb, 19, 2617 San Andres Drive, inside the store and charged him with robbery.


The owner of Gun Sport Ltd., Jon Thomas, said he was surprised and pleased at how quickly police arrested suspects in the robbery, but that he felt sorry for them.

“Here’s a young guy, doesn’t look stupid, but he may spend the next 10 years making little rocks out of big ones,” he said.

Thomas said the robbery was the first time in 30 years of owning gun shops that one of his was held up.

“Gun shops, by and large, aren’t targets because we have guns,” he said. “It’s like someone trying to rob a snake farm.”
Shreveport, Louisiana

From the October 26, 2005 Shreveport Times:
A 24-year-old Shreveport man is recovering at a local hospital after he was shot in his left side after an argument with his girlfriend’s father Sunday afternoon, authorities said.

Terrance Smith is in fair condition at LSU Hospital in Shreveport, a spokeswoman said today.

Jeffrey Arkansas, 46, turned himself into Shreveport police after the incident. But the ensuing investigation determined this may have been an act of self defense. The case has been handed over to the Caddo District Attorney’s office to see if any charges will be filed.
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania

From of October 29, 2005
Man shot to death after altercation in Lancaster Twp.

Police continue to investigate killing of 42-year-old man, who allegedly had assaulted 55-year-old man who shot him.

Reeling from a vicious beating, a 55-year-old man pulled out a handgun and fired two shots at his alleged assailant Friday night in the Sterling Place housing complex in southwest Lancaster Township, city police said.

One of the bullets struck the alleged assailant, a 42-year-old man, in the left side of the abdomen, and the wound was fatal.

Paramedics transported the shooting victim to Lancaster General Hospital, where he died shortly after arriving, Capt. of Detectives John Flemming said.

The 55-year-old man also was taken to General Hospital for treatment of head and facial injuries from the beating. He was treated and released and then interviewed by police. No charges were filed, and the man was released by police pending further investigation and consultation with the Lancaster County coroner and district attorney.

“At this point, we believe that this person does not pose a danger to the community,’’ Flemming said.

The 55-year-old was struck around the face and head, and the blows caused cuts and other injuries. After being struck, the beating victim pulled out a pistol — for which he had a permit — and fired two shots, Flemming said.
From Lancaster‘s of October 30, 2005
Lancaster Police Consider Self-Defense In Fatal Shooting

A fatal shooting in Lancaster Township may have been an act of self-defense, police said Saturday.

Raymond Leary, 42, of Lake Street, Lancaster Township, was shot and killed after getting into an argument with another man in the 600 block of Sterling Place at about 8 p.m. Friday, police said.

The shooter was being beaten by Leary when the shooting happened, police said.

Police are not releasing the shooter's name, but said that as of Sunday morning, the person was not facing charges.
From of November 5, 2005
DA: Lancaster Twp. shooting was self-defense

Love triangle slaying was justifiable use of force

Investigators have determined a 55-year-old man acted in self-defense when he shot and killed a man during a fight, Lancaster County District Attorney Donald Totaro said Friday.

The Oct. 28 shooting inside a Lancaster Township apartment ended an affair Raymond Anthony Leary, 42, was having with Robert Wright's wife.

Totaro issued the ruling after spending the past week reviewing statements from witnesses and medical and autopsy reports.

"Despite this decision, it should be clear that the use of deadly force is only justifiable under very limited circumstances, as a last resort," Totaro said in a statement.

A love triangle between Leary, Wright and Guilene Wright, 45, led to the brawl.

Leary struck Wright in the head with a liquor bottle and punched him in the face several times. In the brawl, Wright also lost a tooth and required five staples to close a gash on his head.

Wright shot Leary once in the abdomen with a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun. He had a permit to carry the gun and wore it in a hip holster.

Guilene Wright obtained a protection from abuse order against Leary in March but continued to see him. Leary had previously punched her in the face and stole her vehicle.

Leary had been in and out of prison for the last five years on drug, theft and assault charges. He was paroled Oct. 16 from Lancaster County Prison.

(Much more detail about the altercation)

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Fort Smith, Arkansas

From Fort Smith‘s of October 27, 2005
Police Investigate Attempted Home Invasion

Shots rang out in a Fort Smith neighborhood Thursday, part of what police now say was an attempted home invasion.

According to police, a man who just got out of jail tried to get back into a home where he once lived. About 1 p.m. Thursday, police said Marvin Wilson, 42, showed up at a home on the corner of 46th and Kinkead.

Wilson's brother and another woman who lived inside would not let him in the home. That's when, police said, he got angry, which caused Alonzo Wilson -- Marvin's brother -- to use force to keep him out.

Officials said they believe he fired one shot at Marvin Wilson, who was not hit. Marvin Wilson reportedly took off in his car but did not get far.

Police said he caused an accident at Towson and Dodson.

According to officials, he fled the scene of that accident and was stopped at North O and arrested.

"He was involved in a hit and run at Towson and Dodson, so he'll be looking at charges there," said Fort Smith police spokesman Jarrard Copeland. "I believe his drivers license may be suspended, so he'll be looking at additional charges for that. So it's probably a whole list of things he's looking at."

Police said they believe Wilson might have been under the influence of alcohol at the time as well. Plus, he is a convicted felon who should not have been in possession of a firearm.
Saline Township, Michigan

From the Ann Arbor News of October 25, 2005
Sentencing upsets victimized couple

Home invader gets 7 to 20 years in prison

Amilee Sharp wasn't going to answer the door.

After hearing a rapid succession of doorbell rings and with a previous burglary in the back of her mind, she wasn't going to greet unexpected visitors to her Saline Township home while her husband was out.

But she didn't have that choice.

Within a minute, she heard the door being kicked down and the mother of two did what came instinctively - she called 911 and grabbed the family pistol.

Randy Fraley, the man she confronted in the kitchen, bolted out of the house with his arms in the air, yelling for her not to shoot, police reports said.

Determined to stop him without inflicting a mortal wound, Sharp fired into the getaway car where his female accomplice awaited. Four of the nine shots pierced the vehicle, leaving it disabled a few blocks away on Braun Road.

Fraley and his girlfriend jumped from the vehicle unharmed, but left a trail that investigators with the Michigan State Police, the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Department and the Livingston and Washtenaw Narcotics Enforcement Team followed. That was in January.

On Monday, Sharp and her husband, Michael, watched with some relief but largely in frustration as Fraley, 36, was sentenced to 7 to 20 years in prison. He pleaded guilty earlier to first-degree home invasion and conspiracy to commit home invasion in two separate Washtenaw County cases.

They were frustrated, in part, because it was at least the sixth prison sentence that Fraley, an admitted crack addict, has received since 1989 for property crimes, state prison records show. He was last paroled in March 2004.

They're also upset because they don't believe his plea agreement and prison sentence will likely end a cycle of crime and punishment that could involve them again.

(More about this felon's history)

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Jefferson County, Colorado

From Denver’s of October 25, 2005
Deputies catch suspected burglar hiding in greenbelt

A man suspected of trying to break into at least three homes on the 10700 block of West Berry Drive is in custody.

The sheriff's department says they received several calls just after midnight from people living on the street. One homeowner said she heard her front door being hit hard enough to break the leaded glass. She said she yelled out that she was going to get a gun and the person took off.

A short time later another homeowner called saying he was holding an intruder at gunpoint. The intruder was attempting to steal a plasma television in the living room. The caller told deputies that the intruder then dropped the TV and ran

Deputies surrounded the area and began a search with a K9 team. The suspect was found hiding in a nearby culvert and taken into custody without incident. He has been identified as 20-year-old Connor M. Sullivan. He's facing two counts of second-degree burglary and two counts of attempted burglary.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Reno, Nevada

From Reno‘s of October 25, 2005
Would-be robber shot during attempted hold-up

One would-be robber is in the hospital and another in jail after an attempted hold-up Monday night.

Reno police say a 38-year-old man was washing his car at a car wash on Booth Street around 11:00 PM when he was approached by two men, one carrying a small, wooden bat.

Authorities say the two suspects attempted to rob the man, but the victim was armed with a hand gun and shot one of the robbers.

Police were able to locate the suspects at the hospital after one of the men showed up to be treated for a non-life threatening gunshot wound.

The un-injured suspect, 18-year-old Luis Alfredo Aguirre, was charged with attempted armed robbery.

Police say the victim has a current concealed weapon permit.
Columbus, Ohio

From Columbus‘ of October 25, 2005
Police: Man Shot, Killed, While Breaking Into Home

Incident Took Place During Possible Robbery, Police Say

Police said that a resident shot and killed one of three men who were apparently trying to break into his home early Tuesday.

The incident occurred at about 12:05 a.m. along the 500 block of Canterbury Way on the city's east side, NBC 4's Kyle Anderson reported.

Police said they found the man's body outside an apartment.

According to police, between four and six men were attempting to break into one of the apartments when at one point one of the men was shot.

Police were questioning several people who might have seen the men or heard the shooting.

Investigators said they were searching for two other robbery suspects.

The shooting victim's identity was not released.
East Oak Cliff/Grand Prairie, Texas

From the Dallas News of October 25, 2005
(Requires free registration)
Resident shoots man trying to enter at night

East Oak Cliff: Intruder is wounded days after another is killed in GP

Clyde Buchanan got up to get a drink of water about 1:30 a.m. Monday and saw a curtain rustle. Then a hand poked through his front window.

The East Oak Cliff resident, who lives in the 2800 block of Arizona Avenue near Beckley and Saner avenues, had been burglarized before. He yelled at the man to go away, but the intruder kept coming.

"I went and got my rifle from under my mattress," said Mr. Buchanan, 55, a Vietnam veteran. "I shot him."

The intruder suffered a gunshot wound to the abdomen and was in critical condition at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, police said.

Two days earlier, a homeowner in Grand Prairie shot an 18-year-old man in the head after the burglar broke through a window of his home about 3:30 a.m. in the 2800 block of Lakepark Drive. Samuel Tovar Jr. of Grand Prairie died at the scene.

"He had a revolver that was stolen from another burglary," said Sgt. Alan Patton of Grand Prairie.

Police in both cities plan to refer the cases to Dallas County grand juries, which will decide whether the shootings are justified.

Texas law gives people wide latitude to protect their property and lives. People have the right to defend any attempts on their lives, and state law also makes it legal to shoot someone for property crimes under certain circumstances.

During the day, people can open fire to protect their property if someone tries to take it by robbery or burglary or destroy it with arson. At night, people can also shoot at violators committing theft and criminal mischief.

"There is some potential deterrent effect if it is known that people are allowed to be armed at home, and that occasionally burglars get blown away," said Fred Moss, an SMU associate law professor. "The flip side is, it might encourage people to shoot first and ask questions later. You might have innocent people getting shot by those who think the law will give them a break."

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Indianapolis, Indiana

From October 22, 2005 WISH-TV channel 8:
A man is recovering after he was shot in what Indianapolis police say was an attempted robbery.

A security guard called police around 12:45 a.m. Saturday morning after finding a man shot in the side, at the Campus Apartments on West 10th Street. Medics took the man to Wishard Hospital while police discovered he was a suspect in an attempted robbery that had happened just minutes before.

Police say the man and another suspect attempted to rob a business across the street, but a delivery driver stumbled onto them and shot one of the suspects.

The other robber shot back and ran away. Police are still looking for him. The employee was not injured.
Clarion, Pennsylvania

From the October 21, 2005 Derrick and News-Herald:
CLARION - The 21-year-old Clarion University student who was shot to death Wednesday night was one of two intruders in an attempted robbery at the South Fifth Avenue residence, authorities announced Friday.


Kristopher Mills, a junior at the university, died after he was shot in the back, officials said.

Police say Mills and another university student, Jason T. Vaughn of Pittsburgh, had entered the residence of two other university students - Zachary Snyder and Christopher Rusnock - in what is being termed a home invasion.

Vaughn, 21, has been charged with robbery, burglary, criminal conspiracy (aggravated assault), criminal conspiracy (robbery) and criminal trespass - all felonies. Those were the only charges announced Friday by officials.

Court documents filed with District Judge Dan George said Mills allegedly "broke down the locked bedroom door of Rusnock and drew a handgun and pointed it at Rusnock."

The court papers say Rusnock allegedly shouted "don't do it" to Mills. Rusnock then allegedly drew a handgun of his own and fired it at Mills, striking him once, according to the papers.


Officials also remain tight-lipped about the motivation for the alleged home invasion.

"The motivation is a very important part of our investigation," said Aaron.

There were a number of crimes involved, but the underlying crime is burglary, LeVier added.

They would not say whether Mills and Vaughn knew the residents.
Further arrests are possible, the article indicated, which suggests that there might have been some other criminal activity involved that might involve those whose home was invaded.
Durham, North Carolina

From the Durham Herald-Sun of October 21, 2005
City closes illegal nightclub

Authorities have ordered the closing of an illegal night spot where a robber was killed in a basement shootout a week ago, but no charges have been filed against the club operators or the man who killed the armed intruder.

Durham Police Detective S.W. Vaughan said the multi-faceted probe is exploring, among other elements, whether gambling or other illegal activities were taking place at the club, operated by Daryl Taylor from the basement of the Holloway Service Store. The retail and grocery store at 1505 Holloway St. is owned by James L. and Joanne Boyette, who were issued an order from the City/County Planning Department to close the club on Tuesday.

Attempts to obtain comments from James Boyette were not successful.

The gun recovered from the slain 18-year-old, Brandon Brown of Lynn Road, is being traced for links to other crimes, Vaughan said, because Brown was only 18 and the legal age for a person to have a permit for a gun in North Carolina is 21.

Police cited witness accounts that Brown entered the private club armed with a gun, then threatened and robbed 38-year-old patron Michael Henderson. When Brown turned and threatened to shoot other patrons, Henderson drew his concealed gun and fired two shots, injuring Brown's hand, police said.

At that point Brown began firing random shots in several directions, and Henderson returned fire with fatal results, police said. Vaughan said Henderson had a permit for his weapon.
Watsonville, California

From the Santa Cruz Sentinel of October 22, 2005
P.V. landowner fires at trespasser

A Pajaro Valley landowner says he is fed up with being a repeat victim of theft, and that’s why he shot at a suspected thief earlier this week.

Detectives from the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office are trying to determine whether Bill McGrath, 51, who lives on Casserly Road, justifiably fired his shotgun at a pickup truck driven by a man he had confronted and attempted to detain while waiting for deputies.

McGrath said he heard the truck drive into his yard about 4 a.m. Tuesday and watched as the driver got out and walked into one of the flower fields surrounding his farm. So McGrath grabbed his 12-gauge shotgun, told his wife to call 911 and hurried outside to confront the trespasser.

He said he told the man, who was back in his pickup, to turn off the engine and wait for deputies. Instead the man in the pickup tried to run him down, said McGrath, who fired and hit the truck’s radiator before the man sped off.

As deputies probe the incident, McGrath’s neighbors say they would have done the same.

"The problem is (the sheriff’s deputies) can’t get here in time so if we don’t do anything, they (criminals) just load our stuff and leave," said McGrath, a former farmer who now does engineering work.

Deputies were dispatched to the McGrath farm after the call from McGrath’s wife, who reported her husband was holding the suspect at gunpoint. The trespasser had already fled, apparently unharmed, and nothing was taken, sheriff’s Sgt. Fred Plageman said.

Deputies confiscating the shotgun.

"(The gun) was seized as evidence at the time because all the facts and circumstances were not clear," he said, adding deputies have since located the vehicle and owner of the truck.

Sheriff’s detective Henry Montes, who is in charge of the case, declined to comment further Friday, saying the investigation remains active.
(Much more, with a good representation of California’s attitude towards self-defense, e.g., "You always run the risk of something going wrong when you introduce a firearm into a property crime, ..." and “…build a fence...”

From the Watsonville Register-Pajaronian of November 9, 2005
McGrath cleared of wrongdoing

An investigation has cleared William McGrath of any criminal wrongdoing in the shooting of a pickup truck on his Casserly Road property, though it might be a while until he gets his gun back.

When a deputy arrived at McGrath’s property after he had shot the radiator of a suspicious pickup that wandered up his drive in the middle of the night, officials investigated the visitors, whom McGrath suggested had criminal intentions. The deputies also took McGrath’s shotgun and began an investigation into whether his use of it had been legally justified.

On Friday, the investigation determined that McGrath acted lawfully, said Sgt. Mario Sulay of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office. However, a state law enacted Jan. 1 requires the owner to apply to the California Department of Justice to recover any firearm taken by police. The DOJ then determines if the applicant is eligible.

(Much more about Mr. McGrath‘s travails trying to recover his weapon)

Friday, October 21, 2005

Harrison County, Louisiana

From Shreveport’s of October 21, 2005
Grand jury decides against charges in drag strip shooting

The Harrison County grand jury today decided not to indict anyone for a shooting at a drag strip in Hallsville that left one man dead and three others wounded, two of them critically.

Grand jurors heard testimony about the shootings before deciding not to charge that four men who had been arrested in the case.

District Attorney Joe Black said the grand jury heard evidence that one of the victims pulled a weapon. The grand jury may have decided it was a case of self defense, Black said.

The shooting happened in June. The driver of an SUV, Cedric Johnson of Tyler, was killed and while three of his passengers were also shot.
Anderson, Indiana

From the Indianapolis Star of October 21, 2005
Farmer wounds two joy riders

Formal charges might not be filed against the owner of a farm for shooting two juveniles who were joy riding on golf carts across his property, a prosecutor said.

Police arrested Brent E. Schalk, 52, of Anderson, on preliminary charges of battery with a deadly weapon and criminal recklessness, all felonies.

Anderson police said two juveniles were wounded when Schalk allegedly shot them with bird shot Friday after they entered a building on the property at Blue Grass Farms.

Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said his office will review the police reports and is awaiting medical reports on the youths' injuries.

"The law allows some level of self-help," he said. "A person is allowed to use some force to protect his property and person.

"Charges will be filed against the five juveniles that were allegedly damaging his property, Cummings said. Cummings said one of the boys who was injured has been arrested six times since March 2004. He was arrested in March, April and July 2004 and again in January, February and August of this year.

"Nothing happens to him," Cummings said of the 16-year-old. "I'm not surprised that he thinks he can get away with this.

"Cummings said Blue Grass Farms filed vandalism reports with Anderson police five times between May and Oct. 14.Schalk's attorney Bryan Williams said the business sustained $10,000 worth of damage to equipment on the two nights prior to the incident.

Police were there on Thursday and Friday, and Schalk hired a private security firm, but security guards couldn't be there until later.

Williams said Schalk had bird shot in the shotgun because he didn't want to hurt anyone.

"The boys said they didn't damage his property but have admitted to being there the two nights before," he said. "I believed he was justified in the action he took."
From the Marion Chronicle Tribune of November 2, 2005
No charges against farm owner who shot at juveniles

No charges will be filed against the owner of a farm who police say shot two juveniles who were joy riding on golf carts across his property, a prosecutor said.

Brent Schalk, 52, of Anderson, was arrested last month on preliminary charges of battery with a deadly weapon and criminal recklessness.

Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said Tuesday that although Schalk won't be charged, there is probably enough evidence to file charges against the juveniles for allegedly damaging equipment owned by Blue Grass Farms.

He said Schalk shooting at the boys with pellets from a rifle was still unwise.

"His actions should not be considered criminal under the circumstances," Cummings said. "It was risky behavior."

Anderson police said two juveniles were hurt when Schalk allegedly shot them with bird shot on Oct. 14 after they entered a building on Blue Grass Farms.

Schalk filed vandalism reports with Anderson police five times between May and Oct. 14. Schalk's attorney Bryan Williams had said that the business sustained $10,000 worth of damage to equipment on the two nights before the incident.

Schalk also hired a private security firm, but security guards weren't there when he fired at the boys.

Williams said Tuesday he was not surprised the prosecutor did not file charges.

"He (Schalk) did everything right," Williams said. "He called police, his insurance company and hired a private security firm. He had done everything reasonable to protect his property."

Cummings said he reviewed the medical records on the two juveniles and the injuries were described as superficial. Schalk has a right to protect his property, Cummings said.

"If the injuries would have been more severe, there would probably have been criminal charges filed," Cummings said.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Mesa, Arizona

From Tucson’s of October 20, 2005
Loan store owner opens fire during robbery attempt

One man is dead and a woman is shot after an attempted robbery this afternoon at a Mesa payday loan store.

At noon, Mesa Police received a silent panic alarm from inside the store.

Before officers arrived at the store near Dobson and Baseline, they received another call about an armed robbery at the store.

Police say the store owner opened fire on two armed suspects, killing one and sending the other to the hospital.

Police believe it was a case of self-defense.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Presque Isle, Maine

From Presque Isle‘s of October 18, 2005
Home Invasion

A truck in a pond, a possible home invasion and a missing person. Those ingredients had law enforcement in Presque Isle hopping this morning.

According to Sergeant Joey Seeley of the P-I-P-D at about eight thirty this morning police received a report of a home invasion on route one. The owner of the home had the suspect, twenty five year old Alex Laferrriere of West Enfield, detained at gunpoint. Once police arrived a search ensued looking for a possible second suspect. A portion of route one was blocked off for an hour.

Upon further investigation it was learned Laferriere and two others were driving down a dirt road off the Doyle Road in Caribou earlier in the day when their truck slid down an embankment into a pond. Laferriere walked for more than two hours to route one. According to witness reports, he then attempted to steal a motor vehicle, and kick in the door of the home.

The second individual walked out of the woods in Caribou. The third person could not be located and a search ensued, as officers were concerned he was still in the woods and possibly suffering from hypothermia. He was eventually located at his home in Crouseville.

Laferriere has been charged with Criminal Trespass, Criminal Mischief, Criminal Attempt and Violation of Probation.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Dayton, Ohio

From Dayton’s of October 18, 2005
Intruder Shot During Early-Morning Break-In

Authorities said a homeowner in Dayton shot an intruder after the suspect smashed through the front window of the man’s home. The home invasion happened around 1 a.m. Tuesday on Kimberly Circle.

The suspect has been identified as 45-year-old Emmanuel Cain. Authorities said Cain is at a local hospital with two bullet wounds and now faces criminal charges.

Police said Cain is accused of jumping through a plate glass window. The couple who lives in the home said they have no idea who the man was or what he wanted.

Officers said in an effort to protect him and his wife, the homeowner shot Cain twice. They said his wife called 911.

Investigators said Cain told the couple that he was not trying to burglarize the home. Police said Cain told them that he was being chased by other individuals, but gave no reason for it. Officers searched the area and did not find anyone.

Authorities said officers found a car nearby with its lights on. They said it appears the car may have been in an accident and had flat tires.

Cain is now under guard at a local hospital. Police said when he is released, he will be taken to the Montgomery County Jail.
Eutawville, South Carolina

From the Orangeburg Times and Democrat of October 17, 2005
Owner kills man in robbery

A young man was killed by a store owner Monday when he walked into a convenience store, brandishing a small-caliber handgun and demanding money, Orangeburg County Sheriff Larry Williams says.

The drama unfolded around noon at Duncan’s Country Store, 14125 Old Number Six Highway, four and a half miles east of Eutawville.

Long-time proprietor Lacey Duncan, who is in his late 70s, was minding the store when the gun-wielding man entered. As they struggled, the gun discharged, but the bullet did not hit anyone, the sheriff said.

Hearing the noise, Duncan’s wife came into the store from the residence that is attached to the store. Observing the men fighting each other, she came to her husband’s defense, the sheriff said.

Lacey Duncan then “discharged an unknown caliber weapon, striking the (assailant) and causing his death,” Williams said.

Williams said investigators had not identified the would-be robber Monday evening. The task has been made more difficult because he had no identification, nor was there a vehicle in the parking lot, the sheriff said.

“He’s a John Doe so far,” Orangeburg County Coroner Samuetta Marshall said Monday night.

Reached by phone Monday evening, Mrs. Duncan said she and her husband were all right, but declined to talk about the incident.

Meanwhile, investigators have conferred with 1st Circuit Solicitor David Pascoe concerning possible charges in Monday’s shooting.

“At this point in time, with the information gathered, we have not charged anyone,” Pascoe said. “However, we’re still looking into the situation and will make a more firm decision concerning charges in the near future.”
Houston, Texas

From Houston‘s of October 18, 2005
Police: Homeowner Fatally Shoots Attempted Robber

1 Suspect Dies In Trash Can; 2 Other Suspects Flee Scene On Foot

A homeowner opened fire Monday night and killed a man he said was trying to rob him outside his southeast Houston home, KPRC Local 2 reported.

The homeowner told KPRC Local 2 that he returned to his home on North Carolina at Zachary at about 10:45 p.m. when he saw three men unlocking burglar bars.

Authorities said one of the attempted robbers jumped out of a trash can and tried to rob him at gunpoint.

"The man had popped up out of his trash can sort of like a jack-in-the-box. The homeowner had a gun on him also. The homeowner fired, striking the suspect in the garbage can several times," Houston Police Department Homicide Division Investigator Kevin Carr said.

That suspect was pronounced dead inside the garbage can. The other two attempted robbers fled the scene on foot.

Police said they do not plan on filing charges against the homeowner. However, officers are not sure if the homeowner had a permit to carry the gun he used in the shooting.
Like fish in a barrel

Monday, October 17, 2005

Durham, North Carolina

From October 17, 2005 NBC channel 17:
DURHAM, N.C. -- A customer at a private club shot and killed a man who allegedly was trying to rob club patrons, police said.

Brandon Brown, 18, was killed at about 1 a.m. Saturday in a private club at 1505 Holloway St., police said.

Brown allegedly was trying to rob about a dozen club patrons when one of them, Michael Henderson, fatally shot him, police said.

No charges have been filed in the case, which remains under investigation, police said.
Memphis, Tennessee

From October 17, 2005 WREG channel 3:
MEMPHIS - Investigators with the Memphis Police Department Robbery Bureau have charged two males in connection with the robbery and shooting in the 800 block of N. Highland on Thursday, October 13, 2005. Arrested and charged are: Xavier Arnold, age 24, and Terrance Pittman, age 25.

Both Arnold and Pittman were shot by one of the occupants of the residence during this crime. Xavier Arnold has been released from the hospital and is in custody at 201 Poplar. Terrance Pittman remains hospitalized with wounds to the leg, arm, and buttocks, but has been upgraded to non-critical condition.

Pittman was charged with one count of Attempted Aggravated Robbery and Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Manufacture/Deliver/Sell, to wit: marijuana. Xavier Arnold was charged with Attempted Aggravated Robbery.

The investigation continues, but no charges are expected against the residents.
Mobile, Alabama

From Nashville, TN’s of October 17, 2005
Mobile man critically wounded, shooter questioned

A 36-year-old Mobile man was shot in the face after he reportedly kicked down the door to his ex-girlfriend's home in Midtown.

It happened yesterday (Sunday) afternoon about 1:40 p-m.

Corporal Marcus Young, a Mobile Police spokesman, said Toby Priest was wounded from a shotgun blast. He said Priest is listed in critical condition at U-S-A Medical Center.

The alleged shooter, 24-year-old Jason Jefferson, was questioned, but he was not arrested.

Young said the case will be presented to a Mobile County grand jury.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Statesboro, Georgia

From the Statesboro Herald of October 16, 2005
Woman attacked in Wal-Mart

Numerous weapons found on suspect in bathroom assault

A bizarre attack in a department store bathroom Friday night ended with an offender being held at gunpoint until police arrived.

A man carrying several weapons, including a stun gun and pepper spray, assaulted a woman in the bathroom at Wal-Mart around 6:22 p.m. Friday, knocking her two-year-old granddaughter from her arms and forcing her into a stall.

The attack occurred in a restroom at the rear of the store, said Statesboro Police Capt. L.C. Williams.

The man, later identified as Stephen Mark Hall, 25, Garfield, used the stun gun when he attacked the victim, then threatened her with a knife as he tried to force her into the stall, he said.

“The victim was knocked to the floor but kept her grandchild away from Hall,” Williams said. “She began to scream, and Wal-Mart employees and shoppers entered the bathroom and got the female and child out.”

Hall, who Williams said was carrying the stun gun, knife, “pepper spray, an expandable baton, brass knuckles and three sets of handcuffs,” fled from the bathroom but was surrounded by store employees and shoppers.

“He began to spray them with pepper spray and threaten them with his stun gun,” he said. “While he fled the store he was spraying pepper spray at anyone he came into contact with.”

Hall made it to the parking lot, but an unidentified man drew a gun and stopped him, Williams said.

“Det. Robert Bryan arrived on the scene and was advised ... the offender was in the parking lot,” he said. Bryan found Hall outside the store “with a pistol drawn on the offender. ... (by a) United States Marine Corps Reservist.”

Bryan and the unnamed Marine ordered Hall to drop his weapons and surrender, but he refused, Williams said.

Another officer, Advanced Patrol Officer Ken Scott, arrived to assist, and Hall eventually “dropped his weapon and was placed under arrest,” Williams said.

Hall was taken to the Bulloch County Jail, charged with aggravated assault, two counts of kidnapping, possession of a weapon during the commission of a crime (two counts), possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, two counts of cruelty to children, multiple counts of battery, one count of carrying a concealed weapon, and one count of carrying a weapon at a public gathering, he said.
Don’t bring a stun gun, knife, pepper spray, an expandable baton, brass knuckles and three sets of handcuffs to a gunfight.

From the Statesboro Herald of October 17, 2005
Marine recounts role in capture of Wal-Mart suspect

Tucker man in the right place at the right time for Friday heroics

Cpl. Kevin Doncaster, a 29-year-old Marine reservist from Tucker, Ga., was in the right place at the right time Friday night when he stopped a man who attacked a woman in a Wal-Mart bathroom, holding him at gunpoint until police arrived.

What was Doncaster doing in Statesboro's Wal-Mart? What was he doing with a gun? And why did he chase Stephen Mark Hall into the parking lot after Hall sprayed him and a store manager with pepper spray?

On his way to Savannah for a weekend getaway to escape work-related stress, Doncaster decided to stop at the department store for groceries.

A situation arose requiring management assistance, and Doncaster was speaking to a female manager around 6:22 p.m. when Hall sped past, spraying them both with pepper spray.

"I figured he was stealing something," Doncaster said. He dropped his purchases and sped after Hall.

Unaware of what had happened, Doncaster chased Hall into the parking lot and was sprayed again.

Having gone through extensive military training, the spray did not affect him like it would others."I've been gassed in the Marine Corps," he said. "It's part of the training, and I recognized it for what it was."

He did not know Hall, carrying three pairs of handcuffs, a collapsible baton, a knife, a Taser, and brass knuckles, had just accosted a 41-year-old grandmother in the Wal-Mart bathroom at the rear of the store.

Hall stunned the woman with the Taser and used a knife to force her into a stall. The woman fought, according to Statesboro Police Det. Rob Bryan, keeping the attacker away from her two-year-old granddaughter.

Customers and store employees, hearing the victim's screams, rescued her and the child, but Hall used pepper spray and threatened them with the Taser, and escaped.

He sprayed everyone he met as he ran, according to Statesboro Police Capt. L.C. Williams, and that's when Doncaster became involved. Catching up to Hall, Doncaster reacted as he "tried to Tase me and spray me again." He pulled a Glock .357 Sig handgun from his waistband and ordered Hall to drop the weapons and get face-down.

"I immediately pulled my weapon and told him if he sprayed me again, he'd be injured."

"I have a license to carry a concealed weapon," he said. And the reason he had the gun with him was "I always take it with me instead of leaving it in the car where it can get stolen."

Hall refused Doncaster's orders, and stood there with his spray and the Taser, "catching his breath," he said.
(Much more)

Friday, October 14, 2005

Sandy Springs, Georgia

From Atlanta’s of October 14, 2005
Woman's Alleged Stalker Fatally Shot

Gunfire Startled Apartment Residents

A man was fatally shot early Friday at a Sandy Springs apartment complex, apparently during a dispute over a woman by a former boyfriend and her current boyfriend.

The 35-year-old man, whose identity was pending, was pronounced dead at the scene following the shooting at the Stratford Apartments, located in the 5400 block of Glendridge Drive.

Police were called to the complex shortly after midnight. Residents reported hearing at least two rounds of gunfire at the apartments, which has a gated entrance.

Police said the ex-boyfriend of the woman managed to get into the complex, where he confronted the woman and her new boyfriend. Police said an argument ensued before the current boyfriend pulled out a weapon and shot the man in the head.

Gary Syblis, a spokesman for Fulton police, said it appears that the ex-boyfriend had been stalking his former girlfriend.

The 28-year-old man who shot the other man said the shooting was in self defense. It was not immediately clear if the man would be charged in the shooting.
Memphis, Tennessee

From Memphis‘ of October 14, 2005
Dogs turn the table on would-be thieves

A Memphis owner fought back during a bizarre home invasion Thursday.

Shawn Stewart didn't use his security system to keep two robbers out, because he knew one of them.

"I know him as Lil' Stickup," he said. "That's his rap name."

Stewart thinks the suspects used the guise of wanting studio time to get inside his home. He and his friend Jelahni Bridgeforth went to a back room to talk with the rapper and partner.

"Next thing I know, he pulled a pistol and pointed it at me," Bridgeforth said. "He told me to drop the phone, and pointed it."

"After that, they walked us around the house," Stewart said. "They wanted us to give them everything we had."

The robbers told the men they were going to kill everyone in the house, including a child, if they did not cooperate. Stewart, who has a handgun permit, wasn't able to get to his gun.

Then, his pet bulls stepped in.

"Once my dogs started biting on them, they diverted their attention towards the dogs," Stewart said. That's when his wife grabbed Stewart's gun and gave it to him.

The bullets flew through the hose, and through a door. Both robbers ran out of the house, and down the street.

"I had my kids in the house, my wife, and my mother-in-law," Stewart said. "I wasn't really thinking about dying. I was thinking about protecting my family."

While he credits his wife and friend for their quick thinking, he credits his dogs with turning the table on the would-be thieves.
Houston, Texas

From Houston‘s of October 14, 2005
Argument Among Woman, 2 Men Leads To Deadly Shooting

Police Take Victim's Girlfriend, Shooting Suspect Into Custody For Questioning

A shooting at a southwest Houston apartment complex Friday morning left one man dead and police questioning the victim's girlfriend and another man, KPRC Local 2 reported.

Neighbors said they heard a gunshot at the Trails of Woodlake apartments on Westerland Drive and Westheimer Road at about 2:30 a.m.

Officers with the Houston Police Department said a woman was visiting a friend when her boyfriend showed up.

Investigators said the couple started fighting and that was when the apartment renter got a shotgun and shot the woman's boyfriend in the chest.

"He subsequently showed up at this condominium and started threatening them, kicking the door in, busted the window out, and made threats with knives to them. At that time, the owner of the condominium shot the suspect," Houston Police Department Homicide Detective L.A. Flores said.

The boyfriend was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police took the victim's girlfriend and the shooting suspect into custody for questioning.

The suspect told police he fired a 12-gauge shotgun through the window of his condominium at the victim to protect the woman.

No arrests have been made.
West Palm Beach, Florida

From the Palm Beach Post of October 14, 2005
Man shot, killed in suburban West Palm

A 35-year-old man was shot dead during a fight early this morning at a warehouse west of West Palm Beach, authorities said.

The man, whose name was not immediately released, got into an altercation about 1 a.m. with a man who lives in a trailer by the warehouse, located at 197 65th Terrace, just north of Southern Boulevard and west of Jog Road, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

The man was shot at least once in the chest area and transported to St. Mary's Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead about 4 a.m., sheriff's spokeswoman Teri Barbera said.

The shooter, whose identity was not released this morning, was questioned by investigators but not arrested. Detectives are probing whether the shooting was a case of self-defense.

With the investigation continuing this morning, officials released no details about what prompted the fight between the two men or why it escalated to gunfire.
Echo Park, California

From Los Angeles’ of October 13, 2005
Shotgun-Wielding Resident Missing After Shoot Out

A shotgun-wielding Echo Park resident who confronted three armed intruders was missing Thursday, and police asked for the public’s help in finding him.

The three suspects tried to enter the apartment in the 1900 block of West Clinton Street in Echo Park about 2:45 p.m. Wednesday, police said. Shots were fired and evidence at the scene indicated people had been shot and fled the scene. The tenant was also gone before officers arrived.

Investigators saw a boy drop a handgun in the bushes caught him and recovered the weapon. A 26-year-old man was shot in the upper body and was found at Kent and Alvarado streets. Both suspects, whose names were not available, were arrested on suspicion of murder.

Three hours later, detectives learned a third man, Jesus Hernandez, 21, was taken to Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital with a gunshot wound to his chest and pronounced dead.

Police have not yet found the tenant.
Pensacola, Florida

More about this incident

From the Pensacola News Journal of October 14, 2005
Officers: Dispute led to shooting

Incident could be one of first to be assessed under 'stand your ground' law

A dispute about money and a piece of wood led to the Wednesday evening shooting death of a Pensacola man, Escambia County sheriff's investigators said Thursday.

The victim, Richard Piovesan, 44, of the 5200 block of Kee Memorial Drive was pronounced dead at Sacred Heart Hospital.

Robert Peaden, 57, told deputies he felt he had to protect himself from Piovesan when the shooting occurred shortly after 9 p.m. Wednesday in a work trailer adjacent to Peaden's Chatham Avenue home, said Sgt. Ted Roy, sheriff's spokesman.

Peaden told deputies Piovesan forced open the door to his work trailer and made threats. Investigators said Peaden shot Piovesan with a handgun at least once in the chest.

Investigators said the incident was an extension of an argument that had begun the day before. Peaden's and Piovesan's homes are a block apart, and the two were acquaintances.

(Much more detail about the incident)

Once the Sheriff's Office completes its investigation, the case will be sent to the State Attorney's Office for review.

The incident could be one of the first local cases to be evaluated under the new, "stand your ground" law that went into effect Oct. 1, State Attorney Bill Eddins said.

The new law provides immunity to those who use deadly force in defense of life and limb wherever they have a legal right to be, eliminating a previous requirement that a person first attempt to flee a threat before taking a life.

"As it relates to situations that occur in your home, there's not a tremendous amount of difference between the new law and the law as it was before," Eddins said. "The new law specifies that when someone forcibly enters a home, it's presumed that he's doing so to commit a felony."

Eddins said it didn't make a difference that the shooting occurred in a work trailer on Peaden's property, not actually in his home.

He said he could not comment on the specifics of Wednesday's shooting because it is being investigated.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Dunn, North Carolina

From the October 12, 2005 Dunn Daily Record:
A judge found no probable cause yesterday for a charge of assault against Bradley Hines of Dunn, who shot Robert Surles at an auto repair shop in August.

Mr. Hines, 31, was charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury for shooting the 42-year-old Mr. Surles in the stomach. Mr. Surles said he was shot as he left his shop for the day. Mr. Hines said he was defending himself against an ambush when he visited Mr. Surles to collect some money.

Parrish Daughtry, who represented Mr. Hines along with Gerald Hayes, said District Court Judge Marcia Stewart found no probable cause for the charge in Lillington District Court Tuesday after hearing testimony from Mr. Surles.

“The state put on the alleged victim,” Mrs. Daughtry said. “He told his story and the judge just didn’t believe it.”

Mr. Surles spent a month in the hospital and suffered injuries to his stomach, lungs and small intestines that require ongoing medical care. There was also evidence Mr. Hines was struck on the head, according to the police report.
Gary, Indiana

From the Merrillville Post-Tribune of October 13, 2005
Man says he fired gun after thieves shot first

An east side man told police would-be thieves breaking into his van fired at him when he confronted them, so he shot back, wounding a 16-year-old suspect.

The teen, struck in the leg and wrist, was admitted to the Methodist Hospitals in Merrillville, where he is being held under police guard.

Gary juvenile division supervisor Lt. Charles Austin is investigating the break-in that led to the shooting. None of the other suspects allegedly involved were arrested at the scene.

The teen could be charged as an adult if police can provide evidence he was armed while committing other crimes. Members of the Homicide Squad are investigating the shooting incident, Cmdr. Michael Nardini said.

“We’ve got CSI (Crime Scene Investigations) back out there today gathering evidence to see if it matches what the homeowner is saying,” Nardini said.

David Thedford, 55, told Patrolman Nicholas Ferrell his neighbor called him about 2 a.m. and said five suspects were trying to get into his van, parked in the 700 block of Georgia Street.

Thedford, an employee with Numark Security, went outside and ordered the young men to stop.

“He heard three shots,” the report states, and Thedford shot back with his .40 caliber semiautomatic pistol, the report states.

When police arrived, they found the wounded teen lying on the ground near Thedford’s white 1989 GMC Safari van.

Nearby were Thedford’s tackle box, fishing net and rod and reel, which had been removed from the vehicle, police said. The van and a 1993 Ford Explorer were damaged by gunfire, police said.
Pensacola, Florida

From the Pensacola News Journal of October 13, 2005
Man shot in chest in apparent home invasion late Wednesday

A Chatham Avenue homeowner shot a person in the chest during an apparent home invasion shortly after 9 p.m. Wednesday, said Sgt. Ted Roy, spokesman for the Escambia County Sheriff's Office.

The injured person was taken by Baptist LifeFlight helicopter to a Pensacola hospital and was believed to be in critical condition.

Chatham Avenue is off Gulf Beach Highway between Sorrento Road and Bauer Road.

The investigation was continuing, and no other information was available late Wednesday.
Peoria, Illinois

From the Peoria Journal-Star of October 13, 2005
(Second item)
Homeowner fires handgun at intruder

A Central Peoria resident who became alarmed by knocking fired his gun after his back door was kicked in by an intruder, police said.

The resident, Jacob Scott, 30, told police he heard the noises and grabbed his handgun after the back door of his home was kicked in about 11:20 p.m.

Scott, who couldn't remember how many times he fired the weapon, said he was afraid and wanted to protect his three children, who were asleep at the time.

No one was injured from the shooting. A slide chain kept the rear door from opening completely after it had been kicked in, police said.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Colfax, California

From Sacramento’s of October 12, 2005
Mountain Lion Attacks Dog In Colfax

Residents Advised To Keep Pets Indoors

Some foothills residents are being advised to keep their pets indoors at night after a mountain lion nearly killed a dog. The attack happened in Colfax earlier this week.

The dog's owner tried to scare the cat away by firing a shotgun. When that didn't work, he shot the animal in the back. The mountain lion fled and the dog survived.

"It's truly amazing that not only did (the dog) live, but his wounds were pretty insignificant. He's lucky ... that's for sure," veterinarian Pam Pussich said.

The state Department of Fish and Game has given the dog's owner a temporary permit to shoot and kill the mountain lion if it returns.
Madison Park, Washington

From the Seattle Post-Intelligencer of October 12, 2005
CEO fired gun with intruder lurking

Marchex chief saw man at his home; he cites separate threats

Madison Park is a quiet, leafy neighborhood where some of Seattle's wealthiest residents own multimillion-dollar mansions on Lake Washington.

But on the evening of Sept. 24, a disturbance occurred involving the chief executive of a publicly traded Internet company and a 33-year-old man who was said to be lamenting the demise of a relationship with a girlfriend.

A little after 9 p.m., Marchex Chief Executive Russell Horowitz, a Seattle Internet pioneer who co-founded Go2Net in the 1990s, fired his semiautomatic handgun into the air after the unidentified man allegedly dug up dead flowers in his yard and confronted a security guard.

The police report said that Horowitz, 39, took the action because he has received two death threats in the past six months. Tuesday, Horowitz told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that he has received threats, but the police officer mistakenly characterized them as death threats.

"There have been threats that have led to security concerns," said Horowitz, who declined to disclose details.

Given the circumstances on the night of Sept. 24, Horowitz said that he reacted appropriately. According to the police report, Horowitz saw the man on his video surveillance system digging up the flowers. He then grabbed his handgun and went to investigate. Before firing into the air, Horowitz told police, he believed that the suspect was reaching into a backpack -- possibly to retrieve a weapon.

"If I hadn't been very concerned about the personal threat to the security person who was there and myself, I would have never taken that action," Horowitz said Tuesday. "The last thing I would ever want to do is be in a situation where the threat of a gun exists. ... I decided to take the risk and fire it into the air, rather than at anyone. It was a decision meant to disarm, as opposed to harm."

After the gunshot was fired, the man fell to the ground and skinned his hands and knees. A witness said that the incident occurred about 100 feet from Horowitz's house and that the man ran away.

Discharging a firearm is a crime in Seattle if there is a likelihood that humans, domestic animals or property will be jeopardized.

According to the police report, no one was arrested and no one was seriously injured. Rich Pruitt, a spokesman for the Seattle Police Department, said the incident would most likely be reviewed by detectives. He could not provide further details on the status of the case.

Horowitz said he was told by police that he acted within the law.

Horowitz is a licensed gun owner and after the incident the 9 mm handgun was returned to his possession. Horowitz said he did not know the individual who had wandered onto his 2.3-acre property. Horowitz called 911 shortly after the incident, as did a neighbor and the suspect.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Maysville, Kentucky

From Lexington’s of October 11, 2005
Homeowner Fires Shots At Intruder

A crime alert in Maysville. Police are searching for a burglary suspect.

Investigators say a man broke into a home Monday, while the homeowner was asleep. Police say the suspect took off when the homeowner pulled out a gun and fired shots.

Police found the suspect's car abandoned.

Police believe the suspect is 29-year old Samuel Jones of Paris. They say Jones is considered armed and dangerous.
Snowflake, Arizona

From the White Mountain Independent of October 11, 2005
Woman praised for calm 911 call

A Snowflake woman received praise from police for her poise under pressure.

At 4:25 a.m. Oct. 1, the woman called 911 to report an intruder was in her house. She said she thought the man was drunk and simply in the wrong house but her husband was holding him at gun point.

Officers were told the front door was open and the caller's husband was in plain view from the outside. She told dispatchers she just wanted the man removed from her house.

An officer responded, took the man into temporary custody and put him into his cruiser. The man was taken around the corner and released about a block away.

Afterward, police called the woman to tell her she had done just the right things during her 911 call.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Kansas City, Kansas

From Kansas City’s of October 10, 2005
Witnesses: Person Shoots Man Trying to Steal Equipment

A man trying to steal work equipment ended up getting a bullet instead, witnesses.

It happened at about 2:45 a.m. in the 1300 block of Freeman.

An alarm on the driveway went off, so his son went outside to investigate, a family member on the scene said.

That was when the son ran into the would-be burglar and shot him, the family member said.

Paramedics took the man to a hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Houston, Texas

From the Houston Chronicle of October 10, 2005
Police say man foils robbery by shooting attacker

A northwest Harris County man foiled an attempted robbery early this morning when he shot and killed one of two men who confronted him as he was walking to his car, sheriff's deputies said.

The shooting occurred shortly after 5:30 a.m., while it was still dark, outside the man's residence at the Jones Crossing Apartments in the 9000 block of Jones Road at Steeple Drive.

No charges have been filed against the shooter.

"It appears to be self-defense," said Harris County Sheriff's Department Lt. John Denholm, who was at the scene.

The shooter told police he left his home and was walking toward his car to go to work when the two suspects confronted him. There was a struggle before the man took out a concealed hand gun.

The man has no criminal record, but deputies found narcotics in his apartment and charges are pending, Denholm said.

Deputies have not verified whether the shooter had a concealed hand gun license for his weapon.

The robbery suspect he killed was wearing a stocking over his head and black clothing. His identity has not been released.

The second suspect, who was also wearing all black and some sort of head covering, fled the scene and was still on the run at 2 p.m.

The shooter was not injured during the confrontation.
Brewton, Alabama

From the Brewton Standard of October 10, 2005
Possible robbery stopped - Owner: "I have a gun, too"

A possible attempted armed robbery failed Tuesday, Oct. 4, when an alert business owner confronted the occupants of a vehicle.

According to East Brewton Police Chief B.C. Cooper, the department received a call on Tuesday morning from S & J Grocery, located on Shoffner Street, reporting a suspicious vehicle. An employee was carrying the trash out and noticed the car tag was covered up and the female driver was trying to keep her face covered with a camouflage cap. The employee returned to the store and reported to the owner, Richard Maxwell, what she had seen.

”We have been robbed several times in the last few years,“ he said. ”There were women and children in here this time and I knew that I couldn't let these people come into the store, if that was what they were planning. I had my gun in my pocket and walked out to the car. I saw a gun lying on the front seat and noticed that it was quickly covered up. I let them know that I had a gun and told them they could not come in. The woman was driving and she quickly sped away.“

(More about the suspects)
Gwinnett, Georgia

From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution of October 10, 2005
Alleged hijack bid nonstarter

Gwinnett police on Friday arrested a man they characterized as a would-be hijacker who tried to commandeer a tractor-trailer idling in traffic.

Unfortunately for him, said officers, he chose a truck whose driver was armed.

Police said Cesar Iban Santoyo Pantija, 23, jumped into the cab of a tractor-trailer traveling north on I-85. It was about 11:30 a.m., and traffic had come to a stop just south of Indian Trail Lilburn Road, police said.

According to investigators' reports, Pantija told the driver, Christobal Colon of Auburn, "You have to take me out of here."

Colon, 43, said no. Police said he told the intruder to go back the way he'd come in --- out the passenger side door of his truck. Pantija ignored the order, Colon told investigators, and moved closer to the driver. Colon reached for a handgun and showed it to Pantija, police said. He also repeated his order: Get out.

Pantija told Colon that the driver had two choices: drive Pantija away, or shoot him.

Colon had a third choice, and took it.

He got out of his truck, gun and truck keys in his hands, according to reports. Police said Pantija moved into the driver's seat, saw a set of spare keys and tried to start the truck. Colon reached into the cab and yanked Pantija out. Then Pantija began to chase the armed driver around his big rig, police said.

Colon circled his truck, jumped back into his seat, threw the machine in gear and drove away, police said. He also dialed 911.

Pantija was "highly intoxicated" when officers arrived on the side of the interstate, according to reports. Noticing a car parked nearby, officers surmised Pantija either had been in a motor vehicle accident or his car had broken down.

Either way, he wanted to put some miles behind him, police spokesman Darren Moloney said. "We think the man was trying to avoid a DUI by getting the heck out of Dodge," he said.

Pantija got as far as the lockup in Lawrenceville. Police charged him with simple assault, hijacking, having an open container in a vehicle, driving under the influence and having no operator's license.

Sunday, October 9, 2005

Indianapolis, Indiana

From the Indianapolis Star of October 9, 2005
Intruder killed, man wounded in 2 shootings

A Chicago man was killed in a shootout with a Westside apartment dweller during a home invasion Saturday morning.

The Chicago man's identity was not released Saturday, but a suspected accomplice, Erick Franklin, 18, Chicago, has been preliminarily charged with murder, said Marion County Sheriff's Lt. Brian Mahone.

An accomplice can be charged with murder if a homicide occurs during a criminal act, Mahone said.

Police said Franklin and the slain man, both carrying firearms, accosted two women at the apartment in the 7100 block of Heather Ridge Court around 4 a.m.

Douglas Jones, 23, Indianapolis, also was inside the apartment.

A shootout occurred, police said, with Jones, formerly of Chicago, armed with a handgun and a rifle.

The Chicago man was killed, and Franklin was apprehended later, police said.

Saturday, October 8, 2005

Houston, Texas

From the Houston Chronicle of October 8, 2005
Man whose family hit by crime killed by gunfire

A man grieving for a family member found dead Friday morning was gunned down early today when he confronted a suspected burglar, Houston police said.

A 16-year-old suspect was arrested after the shooting about 12:15 a.m. today.

Robert Coleman, 42, of the 6400 block of Kasserine Pass, who was at home grieving the death of a family member who had been shot, got word late Friday night that another family member's home was possibly being burglarized.

He grabbed a gun and went to the home nearby where he confronted the juvenile suspect on Malmedy Street.

After an argument, shots were fired and Coleman was struck once in the head. He died at the scene, police said.

Police found evidence of a gun battle, but no weapons at the scene.
Another good guy down.
Forest Park, Georgia

From the Macon Telegraph of October 8, 2005
Jeweler shoots man who tried to pull him out of his car

A wholesale jeweler from Illinois shot a man who tried to drag him out of his car in a hotel parking lot, police said.

The jeweler, whose name has not been released, had pulled into a Ramada Inn on Ga. Highway 85 shortly after 5 p.m. Friday when a group of men approached his car, Clayton County Police Maj. Tim Robinson said.

"One of the men broke the window of the car and tried to pull him out," Robinson said. "While they were struggling (the jeweler) reached down, got his gun and fired three rounds."

One of the men was injured and taken to Southern Regional Medical Center. His condition was not immediately known.

The other men ran off.

It was not known if the 37-year-old jeweler had any jewelry with him or if robbery was the motive for the assault. Robinson said there have been jewelers robbed in similar fashion at Clayton County hotels recently.
Athol, Kentucky

From Lexington’s of October 7, 2005
Violent Robbery

A violent robbery sends the suspect to a hospital with gunshot wounds.

It happened at Noble's Grocery on Highway 52 in the Athol community.

State police say Paul Edward Hahn came into the store armed with a shotgun.

He demanded money from the clerk, Hazel McNight.

After McNight gave him one thousand dollars... Hahn left the store and was approached by the store owner, Eddie McNight.

Police say shots were exchanged and Hahn was struck twice.

He was flown to the U.K. Medical Center.

His condition is not known.

Police say warrants will be issued for Hahn's arrest.

Nobody else was injured.

Friday, October 7, 2005

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

From Philadelphia‘s of October 7, 2005
Police: Firefighter Shoots 3 Would-Be Robbers, Kills 1

A shootout in Philadelphia's Nicetown-Tioga section left one man dead, and two others hospitalized.

Police said a firefighter shot at a group of suspected robbers in self-defense at his home on the 2800 block of North 18th Street.

It happened late Thursday night, but many police officers and homicide detectives were still on the scene in North Philadelphia investigating and collecting evidence Friday morning.

Neighbors told NBC 10 and police confirm that the home was targeted by robbers before. This time, the homeowner was ready for the robbers as he turned the tables on them.

"We were sitting on our steps, heard about 8 to 10 rounds," neighbor Theresa Wiggins-Seals said.

Police said what Wiggins-Seals heard around 11:50 p.m. was a bungled home invasion.

"They have been breaking in his house. This is the fourth time they broke in his house. He was upstairs at the time they broke in his house," Wiggins-Seals said.

Authorities said the homeowner, who is a Philadelphia firefighter, was at home when he heard noises.

He came downstairs, officials said, to find four robbers in his home. Police said they shot at the homeowner and missed. The homeowner shot three of them.

Neighbors said the homeowner is a good person who always helps his neighbors.

"This is a man who always helps anybody, a loving good neighbor does anything somebody asks him to do," Wiggins-Seals said.

One alleged robber was killed and two others were injured. The extent of the other two alleged robbers' injuries is unclear. They were hospitalized.

The fourth alleged robber ran away.

Thursday, October 6, 2005

Detroit, Michigan

From Detroit’s of October 6, 2005
Video Store Owner Killed by Armed Robbers

Gunfire erupted in a video store between two armed robbers and the owner, and the owner later died from his injuries. Police say they have one suspect in custody, but another is on the loose.

Friends and coworkers of Wally, the owner of City Video, went to survey the gruesome scene Thursday. Broken glass and bullet holes revealed some of the harrowing details from Wednesday night’s shooting.

Tyisha Anderson-Shelton is a former employee of City Video, and had this to say about Wally: "He was a good guy. He was cool. He was trying to do his religion. He was very strong on religion. He was very helpful for the people in the neighborhood. If you needed a job, he tried to help you as much as he could. It’s just sad to see someone loose their life over something so frivolous."

Detroit police say that around 9 p.m. Wednesday, two men armed with guns stormed into the store at 6 Mile and Evergreen.

The owner had a gun as well, having been robbed several times. A shootout followed.

"This store was hot for getting robbed," Tyisha explained. "I mean, this store got robbed so many times, it’s like, unspeakable. You know, he was working on that. That was his project. But I guess he’ll never get the chance to see that project come to life."

Police say Wally was shot in the head, and died Thursday morning. One of the suspects was also shot, and checked himself into Sinai Grace Hospital.
The good guys lose one.
Redondo Beach, California

From the Redondo Beach News of October 5, 2005
(Scroll down)
Victim fights back

On Sept. 29 at about 11:50 a.m. a subject entered the Hollywood Riviera Car Wash in the 1500 block of South PCH and brought an item to the counter with money to purchase it. When the cashier opened the register, the suspect allegedly threatened him with a gun. He was pointing the gun at the cashier and taking money out of the cash drawer when the cashier grabbed the gun. The suspect ran out of the business. The victim, armed with the suspect's .22 caliber revolver, chased him through the parking lot to Avenue H. As a white pickup truck slowed for the suspect to jump into it, a passenger in the truck allegedly pointed another handgun at the victim. The victim fired four to five shots at the suspects. The truck fled east on Avenue H and south on Palos Verdes Blvd. Police are seeking information concerning the crime. The robber was described as a short, stocky male about 21-27 years old, wearing jeans, a blue T-shirt and a dark baseball cap. The driver was described as a male about 21-27 years old. The truck was described as a white Chevy S-10 or Toyota Tacoma-type truck with utility racks that had two horizontal rails and trashcans and a broom in the bed.
Corpus Christi, Texas

From the Corpus Christi Caller-Times of October 6, 2005
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Local resident shoots intruder

Man's wife and children had been tied up by robbers

A Corpus Christi man shot and wounded one of several intruders who tied up his wife and small children and ransacked his home early Wednesday morning, police said.

Frank Pizzini, 23, told police he and his wife were sleeping at their home in the 4700 block of Mokry Drive when he heard a crash at his front door about 3:15 a.m.

Police reported that as Pizzini went to the door to confront three men wearing hoods or ski masks, his wife rolled off their bed onto the floor and called 911.

"They threatened Mr. Pizzini," Police Cmdr. Mike Walsh said. "They asked for guns, jewelry, money and the keys to the car."

Walsh said Pizzini got into a struggle with the men while his wife and children were taped up.

"They spent a short while ransacking the house, then ran out the back door," Walsh said.

He said Pizzini followed the men, picked up a pistol one of the invaders dropped near Pizzini's property and fired several shots, hitting one man in the leg.

Andres Aleman, 24, who is on probation for aggravated robbery, was arrested and treated for a bullet wound in his leg, police said. A bond for Aleman, who was under guard at Christus Spohn Hospital Memorial late Wednesday, was set at $100,000.

Walsh said a pistol and two shotguns were recovered at the scene as well as a Chrysler minivan reported stolen in May that might be connected to the crime.
Carlton, Minnesota

From the Duluth News Tribune of October 6, 2005
Jurek not guilty in death of brother

COURTS: The Mahtowa man says he shot his older brother in self-defense.

Florian "Sonny" Jurek already lost one son. He said a Carlton County jury kept him from losing another son Wednesday night.

Jurors deliberated about five hours before finding Dennis Jurek not guilty of premeditated murder in the Aug. 2, 2003, shooting death of his brother, Michael, 41.

Jurek, 42, admitted using a .30-.30 caliber deer rifle to shoot his brother in the chest and back after a fight on their family farm in Mahtowa Township. He said he did so in self-defense after suffering30 years of abuse by his bullying brother, who was threatening to kill him.

If found guilty of first-degree murder, Jurek would have received a mandatory life prison sentence. The six-man, six-woman jury also acquitted him of inten- tional second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter.

The fight that led to Michael Jurek's death started when the Jurek brothers were drinking beer and cutting firewood.

Dennis Jurek said his brother started beating and choking him and he ran back to the farm to escape. He said his brother gave chase on a four-wheeler.

The defendant went into a garage attached to the house he shared with his parents and waited for his brother. He said he shot him once in the chest when he got within "target range" and shot him again in the back when he got off the ground and lunged at him. It wasn't made clear during the trial how much time elapsed between the fight in the woods and the time of the shooting.

Under Judge Robert Macaulay's instructions, if jurors didn't find Jurek guilty of first-degree murder they had the option of finding him guilty of first-degree manslaughter, even if they concluded that he acted with premeditation and with intent to kill.

(Further discussion of verdict options)

Wednesday, October 5, 2005

Stockton, California

From the October 4, 2005 Stockton Record:
STOCKTON -- A wounded liquor-store owner shot a would-be robber around 9:30 p.m. Monday after being shot in the buttocks.

Steven Groce of Stockton was shot while closing his El Dorado Liquor store, on El Dorado Street near Churchill Street, Stockton police said. He and the man he shot were taken to St. Joseph's Medical Center and San Joaquin General Hospital, authorities said.

The two men's conditions were not immediately available.

One or two people remain at large as of late Monday, according to Stockton police.

Police said men with bandannas pulled over their faces entered the store armed with handguns, one of them a long-barreled revolver.
The bad guy won't try this again. From the October 5, 2005 Stockton Record:
STOCKTON -- The man who attempted to rob the El Dorado Liquor store around 9:30 p.m. Monday died after a shooting exchange with the store owner, police announced Tuesday.

Police found Stockton resident Edward Preciado, 34, with gunshot wounds in the store parking lot at 4106 N. El Dorado St.

He died late Monday at St. Joseph's Medical Center, according to the Stockton Police Department.