Saturday, December 3, 2005

Newberry Springs, California

From the Barstow Desert Dispatch of December 3, 2005
Shooting may have been in self-defense

Officials: Newberry man said he thought victim was a burglar reaching for a weapon

A man shot to death on a local road Thursday may have been killed in self-defense, according to a report from the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.

Troy Allen Creek, 41, from Inyokern, was identified Friday by the sheriff's department as the man law enforcement officials found lying on Harvard Road south of Bedford Road with a gunshot wound to the chest Thursday morning. Creek was pronounced dead by California Highway Patrol officers who had arrived at the scene by helicopter.

Shortly after law enforcement arrived, Eugene Ross Morris, 66, of Newberry Springs came to the crime scene. According to the sheriff's department, Morris had previously found Creek's disabled car on Harvard Road, full of property. Morris stopped to investigate, concerned that Creek might have burgled a nearby home.

Creek then ran towards Morris, yelling and threatening his life, according to the sheriff's department report. Morris said he saw Creek reach into his jacket and thought he was reaching for a weapon. Morris was armed with a 12-gauge shotgun and fired one round into Creek's chest, according to the report.

Morris was detained by deputies at the scene and the shotgun was later seized from Morris' house.

The homicide division of the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department is continuing the investigation. The exact cause of Creek's death is pending the results of an autopsy. The case will be submitted to the Barstow District Attorney's Office for review.

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