Saturday, March 31, 2007

Axton, Virginia

From the Roanoke Times of March 31, 2007
Police: Man in N.C. hospital after being shot

An Axton man is in fair condition at a North Carolina hospital after he was shot Thursday night, an official said.

Herbert Howard Cline, 23, suffered a gunshot wound to his back following a dispute in Axton, said Lt. Kimmy Nester of the Henry County Sheriff's Office.

Cline was taken to Memorial Hospital of Martinsville and Henry County and then was transferred to Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Investigators have talked with a person who admitted to firing shots in self-defense after seeing Cline pull a weapon, Nester said. That person has not been charged because authorities are still investigating the shooting.
Vista, California

From of March 30, 2007
Clerks With Machete, Handgun Can't Stop Robbers With AK-47

Two men, one armed with an AK-47 assault rifle, robbed a Vista market but not before taking on two clerks, one of them armed with a machete.

Sheriff's deputies said the suspects walked into the El Leno Market on South Santa Fe Avenue on Thursday night. One jumped over the counter and grabbed a bag with money in it.

Meanwhile, a clerk pulled out a machete, and another employee took out a handgun and fired a shot into the ceiling.

The robbers were able to get away with about $3,500, police said, and no one was hurt.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Cleveland, Ohio

From March 30, 2007 WKYC channel 3:
A suspect attempted to rob someone.

The "victim" turned the tables, snatched the gun from the suspect and shot the suspect.

An off-duty officer came upon the scene, was able to disarm the robbery victim who had the gun. Then the off-duty commandeered a vehicle and chased down the initial robbery suspect.
Arlington, Texas

From March 30, 2007 Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
FORT WORTH -- In December, Darrell Roberson fatally shot a man outside his Arlington home after finding the man and his wife in a compromising position inside a pickup.

But Roberson is no longer in trouble with the law.

His wife, Tracy Denise Roberson, is now the one facing criminal prosecution in connection with the killing.

On Wednesday, a Tarrant County grand jury declined to indict Darrell Roberson, 38, on a murder charge in the death of 32-year-old Devin LaSalle.

Instead, the panel on Thursday returned an indictment against Tracy Roberson on a charge of manslaughter, stemming from allegations that she recklessly caused LaSalle's death by falsely claiming that she was being raped, prompting her husband to shoot LaSalle.

Tracy Roberson, 35, was also indicted on a charge of making a false report to a police officer on accusations that she also lied to Arlington police, telling them she was being raped when, officials said, she had actually been having an affair with LaSalle. A warrant for her arrest was issued Thursday.
Hobbs, New Mexico

From KAMC of March 30, 2007
Elderly Hobbs Man Shoots Intruder

Hobbs police say they rarely hear of burglaries when people are home and it`s even rarer for a victim to fire shots.

Residents of Hobbs say Jerald Hanson has been around the town forever. He’s a guy you can see riding around town on his motorcycle who never puts up with much from anybody. He’s known by most as Pac Rat but ever since early Friday morning he’s been known for a lot more.

"Lying in bed, heard some funny noises you know? And this guy was in my house. He had a knife and he says give me all your money or I`ll kill you! That`s where he made a mistake, he started counting it. It just gave me enough time to go under my pillow and get my gun. I shot at him."

That’s the account from Hanson after police say 36 year old Rodney Rudy broke into his home around 3:30 Friday morning.

"Here we have an instance where a gentleman is 76-years old and you have a suspect that`s 36-years old in a lot better shape, a lot younger, obviously standing over with a knife, surprising someone that was asleep. So it`s a situation that doesn`t happen often" says Captain Donnie Graham with the Hobbs Police Department.

Hanson fired two shots at the suspect, one of those hit Rudy in the left abdomen and back area. He then ran to a nearby home. Police found him and took him to Lea Regional Hospital. He was later taken to University Medical Center in Lubbock where he remains in stable condition. Police say when he recovers he could face some serious charges including robbery or aggravated burglary. Both are second degree felonies.

Hobbs police say New Mexico citizens are allowed to take reasonable and necessary steps to protect themselves or their property and they will investigate what happened at Hanson’s house.
Mobile, Alabama

From the Mobile Press-Register of March 30, 2007
Armed woman holds suspected burglar

A mother who had just dropped off her daughters at school Wednesday morning held a suspected robber at gunpoint after she returned home to find him in her south Mobile driveway, Mobile police said.

Lelia Richardson left her Parkway Drive home at about 7 a.m. to take her two daughters to school, police spokesman Officer Eric Gallichant said Thursday.

When she returned about 50 minutes later, she saw an unfamiliar car under her carport and the door to her home open. The door frame was busted and splintered from where someone had apparently kicked it in, Richardson said.

"That's when I knew exactly what was going on," Richardson said. "I called 911 before I got out of the car and then I got my pistol ... just in case he tried to do something to me."

Richardson pulled into her driveway and blocked in the unknown car and a man she had "never seen before in my life" walked out of her home, she said.

"I saw him coming out of the house, and he walked up toward me to see who I was and that's when it all happened," Richardson said.

Richardson asked the man who he was, and he told her that he lived there, she said.

"I said, 'Not unless you moved in during the last hour,'" Richardson said.

The woman drew her pistol -- "I always carry it for protection," she said -- and told the man not to move until police arrived.

"He told me, 'Please don't shoot,' and he said he was going to put everything he took back in (the house)," Richardson said. "And he did. He put it all back in my den."

Richardson kept her weapon drawn while the man returned her things, she said, and kept her pistol on him until officers arrived and arrested him.

"You just have to be prepared for anything," she said. "I like to make sure if anything happens that I'm able to protect me and my kids."

Richardson said that through the whole ordeal, she was never once scared for her life.

"Because I knew if he came to me, I was going to shoot him," she said. "I didn't want to hurt him. I didn't want to shoot him, but I didn't want him to do anything to me."

Investigators found some stolen property from inside Richardson's home and a small amount of marijuana in the man's car, Gallichant said.

Jedadhai Powell, 20, of Mobile, was charged with third-degree burglary and second-degree marijuana possession, Gallichant said.

Powell was being held Thursday at Mobile County Metro Jail in lieu of $3,500 bail, the jail log showed.
Memphis, Tennessee

From Memphis’ of March 29, 2007
Attacker strikes same place twice, but runs out of luck

A man who stopped a kidnapping and the woman he saved are telling their stories.

Their stories begin with a tale of a man who came looking for his ex-girlfriend. He threatened her life and took her money. He got away with it once.

He was not so lucky the second time around.

Sharon Hamblin worked as a caregiver for 85-year-old Louise Hardin.

Last week, Hamblin's past came back to haunt her.

"I came here to kill you but I changed my mind" were the words she remembered coming from her ex-boyfriend, Gary Stewart, who police say broke into the home through a bedroom window.

"He said give me all the money you got," she recounted.

Stewart then forced her and Hardin into the car and made them drive to West Memphis so Hamblin could cash a check for nearly $300.

Stewart took the money and let the two of them go.

"Officer first on the scene told me it's possible this man may come back," said Louise Hardin's son Kent. He came to live in the house to protect his mother and her caregiver.

Three days later, as the officer had warned, Gary Stewart was back after breaking the glass on this garage door.

"I woke up and looked out and saw the perpetrator with a knife to the caregivers throat," said Kent Hardin.

That's when Hardin grabbed his gun. Meanwhile, Hamblin was being forced to the car again.

"I was backing up and I saw Kent come out the back door," she said.

"I ran out with the gun, opened up the car door and stuck it in his face," added Kent Hardin.

"I put the car in gear and I jumped out of the car and got on the ground," said Hamblin.

Kent Hardin added, "When he looked up and saw the gun he just kind of faded, melted."

"He told Gary Stewart, get out of the car get out of the car!" said Hamblin.

"He just rolled out of the car and laid down here in the garage floor put his arms in front of him, his feet back and I held the gun on him."

Hardin says five minutes later, the police arrived.

Stewart is charged with kidnapping, assault and burglary. He also faces robbery charges in West Memphis.

On top of that, he could face federal charges as well. His court date is set for April 13th.

Sharon Hamblin says her biggest mistake was telling Stewart where she worked. Hamblin is no longer working for the Hardin family.
Lawrence, Massachusetts

From the North Andover Eagle-Tribune of March 30, 2007
Vigilante cabbie cleared of attempted murder charge

A Lawrence cab driver, who took the law into his own hands and shot an alleged robber in the back, has been cleared of attempted murder charges.

Bienvenido Rodriguez shot the man with a semiautomatic handgun after being robbed at knifepoint on Parker Street in January.

Police disagreed with Rodriguez's vigilante action and charged him with attempted murder.

But this week, the Essex County grand jury in Salem declined to indict Rodriguez, 36, of Camden Street, Methuen.

However, the same grand jury indicted the man who was shot.

Herman Irene, 36, of 25 Foster St., Lawrence, faces a charge of armed robbery, said Stephen O'Connell, spokesman for the Essex County district attorney's office.

"There will be no prosecution of Mr. Rodriguez," O'Connell said.

Yesterday, Lawrence police Chief John Romero said Rodriguez would have been facing less serious charges if he had pulled his gun while the robbery was being committed, instead of waiting until Irene was running away and no longer a threat.

Irene was running down Parker Street when Rodriguez drew his .40-caliber Smith &Wesson semiautomatic pistol and fired at him.

The bullet passed through Irene's body narrowly missing his spine and major arteries.

He was taken to Lawrence General Hospital then airlifted to Brigham and Women's Hospital were he underwent surgery.

Police charged Irene with armed robbery and assault with a dangerous weapon.

Rodriguez was charged with armed assault with intent to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and discharging a firearm within city limits.

Rodriguez told investigators immediately after the shooting that he did not deliberately try to hit Irene and only shot to scare him, police said.

Romero said yesterday he was not surprised the grand jury did not indict Rodriguez, but said it would be up to Methuen police Chief Joseph Solomon to decide whether to restore Rodriguez's license to carry firearms. Methuen issued the gun license originally.

In many states, this action by Rodriguez would probably be prosecuted.
Athens, Alabama

From the Decatur Daily of March 30, 2007
Burglary halted with a gun

Athens man captures suspect, accidentally shoots window of neighboring cleaners

After two nights of someone breaking into his downtown business and stealing antiques, Steve Bauer armed himself with a plastic cola bottle and a .44 Magnum and spent Wednesday night at his office.

Bauer's son knew his father was staying the night at the office to protect his property.

"My son was leaving his girlfriend's house about midnight and saw all the cop cars," Bauer said. "He said he thought, 'Daddy's done shot somebody.' "

Bauer, 51, put the cola bottle at the back door so it would make a noise when opened. He laid on a cot in a room adjacent to his office, the gun within reach.

His office, Steve Bauer Properties, is a house on North Clinton Street across from Calvin's Cleaners.

"I fell asleep sometime after 11," he said. "I woke up when I heard the bottle fall. I could hear papers shuffling in my office."

Bauer peeked into his office and saw a woman with a flashlight looking through his desk. He asked the woman what she was doing, and the woman called him by name and replied that she was looking for a house to rent.

Bauer buys, sells and rents property.

"I said, 'Ma'am, it's midnight, and you have a flashlight. I don't believe so. I believe you need to lay down on the ground.'"

Bauer called Athens police. While he was on the phone, he heard someone outside. The woman's boyfriend was in a pickup truck.

"I ordered him to get out and put his hands on the truck," Bauer said. "I told him I had a gun and was on the phone with police, but he cranked the truck and took off."

Trying to shoot at tires

Bauer shot at the truck's back tires. A bullet ricocheted off the roadway and hit a window at Calvin's Cleaners.

"I wish I hadn't shot, but it was a spur-of-the-moment thing," Bauer said. "I thought he was going to plumb get away."
Bauer said police responded quickly.

"I've got to thank them for doing an outstanding job," he said. "Floyd Johnson (lieutenant) was the investigator, and he did a good job. I want them all to know I'm thankful."

An officer handcuffed the woman, who remained on the floor, while others searched for the pickup.

"A .44 Magnum's a big gun," Bauer said. "It probably looked like a cannon to her. I think it scared her into staying put."

Capt. Marty Bruce said officer Jay Looney spotted the pickup at Beaty and Pryor streets and tried to stop the driver. The driver refused and drove to his home at 707 Frazier St.

Bruce identified the driver as 46-year-old Daniel Stubbs. Bruce identified Stubbs' girlfriend as Daphne Watkins, 43, of 1205 Seventh Ave.

Police charged Stubbs with felony driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance for allegedly having four Xanax pills, third-degree burglary, attempting to elude, driving with a suspended license and having an open container.

Stubbs is out of the Limestone County Jail on $8,000 bond.

Police charged Watkins with two counts of third-degree burglary. She is out of jail on $4,000 bond.
Sevier County, Tennessee

From Sevierville’s The Mountain Press of March 30, 2007
Attempted home invasion probed

Sevier County sheriff's deputies searched the area around East Madison Drive Wednesday after a homeowner allegedly fired a weapon at a person who threw a flower pot through the window of the home.

Sheriff Ron Seals confirmed that deputies were summoned to the area after the homeowner called to report the incident. The intruder allegedly fled in an SUV as the homeowner approached; it wasn't clear if any shots struck the person or the vehicle.
Cullman, Alabama

From the Cullman Times of March 30, 2007
Man shot, killed by ex-wife

Local authorities were still investigating Thursday the death of a Welti man, who was allegedly shot four times by his ex-wife, according Sheriff’s reports.

Sheril Dingler, 38, of Welti, allegedly shot her former husband, 38-year-old Rickey A. Dingler, with a .40-caliber Glock late Wednesday at her son’s home.

The shots were allegedly fired after Mr. Dingler reportedly kicked in the front door of the residence, which Mrs. Dingler had fled to during a heated argument with her former husband.

Mr. Dingler died on the scene.

According to Sheriff Tyler Roden, Mrs. Dingler was not arrested or charged for the shooting on the grounds it may have been an act of self defense.

“She was treated for injuries,” he said. “We are still investigating it at this time, and we’ll make a determination later.”

According to reports, while the two were divorced, they lived together at a residence about 200 yards from the scene of the shooting.

Roden said they had been in an argument since Mr. Dingler arrived home late Wednesday evening, and that he had allegedly assaulted his ex-wife with his fists and threatened her during the argument.

When Mrs. Dingler fled the house for her son’s, Mr. Dingler allegedly followed her and assaulted her again with his fists. The shooting occurred at approximately 11 p.m.

As of Thursday, it was not clear who owned the weapon used in the shooting. Roden said it was kept at the residence where the shooting occurred.

It is not known where the bullets struck the victim or what the two were arguing about.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Milwaukie, Oregon

From Portland’s of March 29, 2007
Store owner tackles armed teen robbery suspect

A store owner wrestled an armed 15-year-old robbery suspect to the ground Thursday afternoon and held him at gunpoint until deputies arrived, authorities said.

The incident happened about 2:20 p.m. at the S-n-K Market located at 4791 SE Thiessen Road.

The teen suspect came into the store acting nervous and as he approached the counter with a soda, the store owner noticed a gun, according to Detective Jeffrey Green with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.

“The store owner and suspect got into a wrestling match for the weapon, which the store owner was able to take from the suspect,” Green said.

Deputies later found a mask, gloves and a demand note. The weapon, a black powder handgun, was not loaded at the time of the robbery.

The teen’s name was not released.

He was taken to a juvenile detention facility. Charges were still being decided.
North Little Rock, Arkansas

From Little Rock’s of March 29, 2007
Homeowner Claims Self Defense in North Little Rock Shooting

It happened early Thursday morning near Haywood and Water Street. Police say a man has admitted to shooting at another man, but claims it was in self-defense.

(Sharea Yancy, Neighbor) "I knew there was somebody over there laying down because I seen the white sheet."

When Sharea Yancy got home early Thursday morning, her North Little Rock neighborhood was full of police, and the coroner was on the scene. Across the street from her house a man lay dead on the ground.

(Yancy) "It's just shocking. I was kind of shaken. It just shocked me."

When police responded to a shots-fired call around 12:30 a.m., they found the body of 22-year-old Erroll Bernard Robinson, Jr. on the front porch of a vacant home on Water Street.

A resident around the corner, 43-year-old Myron Doss, told investigators he fired twice in self-defense, and the man ran away.

(Officer Carmen Green, North Little Rock Police Dept.) "The resident heard glass break outside his residence. When he opened the door he saw a black male crouched down behind his vehicle. When he stepped out onto his porch that's when the individual stood up turned towards him and fired one shot. And returned? Yes and he returned fire."

So far, police have not made any arrests.

(Yancy) "If it was me, I would have done the same thing if everything was legit and everything went like he said it was. People are just getting tired. It's like you stay at your house and I'll stay at mine and leave other people's things alone."

The man who was found dead had been arrested previously on robbery charges. Police say the investigation is ongoing.
From Little Rock’s of March 30, 2007
Homeowner Kills Suspect

A North Little Rock neighborhood that's out of control. That's what some people are saying after an overnight shooting in the Rose City area that left one man dead. But North Little Rock police believe it's a case of self-defense.

Mickie Brown likes her neighborhood, one that is usually quiet the silence broken by gunfire early this morning. "Shocked I thought I slept through this. I live across the street, one of the bullets could have ricocheted and hit me," says Brown.

North Little Rock police say someone was trying to break into a car parked in front of a house. When the homeowner came out, he was armed and approached the man. The suspect fired at him and the homeowner shot back... 21 year old Bernard Robinson died on the steps of this vacant home a block away. "They need more patrol, watch more and cut down on the gang bangers," says Brown.

Brown says this part of Rose City isn't a bad area they just need a little help. "it's a proud neighborhood, I've been here seven years and never had a problem. The police need to step up and get some of the bad elements out of the neighborhood," says Brown.

The homicide is too much for Akika Perkins and her small children. "They aren't going to grow up around here, not if this is going to happen," says Perkins.

It's the fifth homicide for the city, but it's the first for this east-end neighborhood. Brown says it's a preventable tragedy. "Here we sit today with a 22 year old who didn't get to finish his life out," says Brown.

North Little Rock detectives are not done in this case. Investigating tonight whether what happened last night was a justified shooting or a crime. Meanwhile those living in the area want something to change. Investigators are looking at the shooting as being justified since the suspect was invading the homeowner’s property. The last decision will come from the prosecutor's office on whether to file charges. The homeowner was questioned and released.
Tieton, Washington

From the Yakima Herald of March 29, 2007
Deputies investigate Tieton shooting

Yakima County sheriff's deputies said a Tieton man shot his 35-year-old son in the abdomen early this morning in a possible case of self-defense.

The shooting took place at 4 a.m. at a home in the 1100 block of Beffa Road in the Tieton area, according to information from sheriff's Chief of Detectives Stew Graham.

Graham said Dennis G. Strain, 59, shot his son, Dennis J. Strain, once in the abdomen after they argued and the younger man charged his father.

The younger man was taken to Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, where he underwent surgery. Graham said the wound is not considered life-threatening.

No arrests have been made, and the investigation is continuing, Graham added.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Everett, Washington

From Everett’s of March 28, 2007
Shooting appears to be self-defense

A fatal shooting in Everett on Tuesday night may be a case of self-defense, according to a neighbor who heard the gunshots.

The violence erupted in the 2300 block of Wetmore at 8:22 p.m. Tuesday, police said.

Gretchen Galstad said she heard the gunfire and later spoke with a neighbor who witnessed the events unfold in the home where the shooting occurred.

Apparently a man kicked in the front door at the same time another man was leaving the century-old building, Galstad said.

The intruder hit the man with a handgun, went up the front stairs and fired a few shots, she said. Galstad lives in the downstairs unit in the building where the shooting took place.

The man who was struck with the gun, a friend of the building’s upstairs tenant, managed to wrestle the weapon away and shoot the intruder, she said.
From the The Seattle Times of March XX, 2007
Gun wrestled away; intruder is killed

An armed intruder who kicked in the door of a house near downtown Everett was killed with his own gun Tuesday night, a resident said.

Everett police detained and then released a man they described as an acquaintance of a man who rented the upstairs portion of the house in the 2300 block of Wetmore Avenue. The shooting happened in the interior stairwell leading from the front door up to the resident's living quarters, said Gretchen Galstad, who rents the lower unit.

Galstad said the intruder, whom police have not identified, kicked in the door and then encountered the renter's acquaintance on the stairs. The intruder fired at least two shots before the other man wrestled the gun away and shot the intruder with it, she said.

Police spokesman Sgt. Robert Goetz said "probable cause does not exist at this time" to arrest the acquaintance. Goetz said the incident "does not appear to be random" and the investigation is continuing.
Athens, Alabama

From Huntsville’s of March 28, 2007
An Athens man says he felt threatened last night, so he shot another man. But is that considered self defense?

Athens Police received a call around 7:30 Tuesday night that a man had been shot. If happened off South Houston Street. 46 year old Jimmy Ray Wallace had been shot once in the stomach. Wallace was already being treated at Athens Limestone Hospital Emergency Room when police got the call.

Investigators there discovered that Wallace had gone to his estranged wife's and her boyfriend's home. Wallace was there to get a car back. The boyfriend told Wallace to get off the property. Police say Wallace then told the boyfriend he was going to kill him. The boyfriend says he felt his life was threatened and shot Wallace once in the stomach. Now a grand jury must decide if it was self defense or a criminal act.

"Alabama law just recently changed as far as self defense and defending your property." Athens Police Captain Marty Bruce told WAAY 31. "Now, all you have to prove is that you were in fear of your life."

Alabama's new self defense law went into effect last June. Wallace is expected to be okay. No charges have been filed.
New Orleans, Louisiana

From the New Orleans Times Picayune of March 28, 2007
Shooting of son ruled justified

Defense notes victim arrived with a gun

A New Orleans man who shot his son five times after an argument, leaving him paralyzed and in a wheelchair, acted in self-defense, a jury decided Monday evening.

James S. Frazier, 50, who spent a lifetime in the U.S. Marines, is free from the criminal charge of attempted second-degree murder for the March 21, 2005, shooting at the eastern New Orleans apartment building where he lived.

The jury believed the elder Frazier's story that the violent incident was all in self-defense, because the son had brought a 9-mm handgun to his father's apartment that night.

James Frazier wasn't injured, and no evidence showed the son ever successfully fired his handgun. The gun jammed, and no bullet came out. Eric Frazier was left bleeding on a third-floor landing.

The defense said that James Frazier, a 29-year veteran of the Marines, feared for his life after his son pointed a gun at him, so he went into his bedroom and returned with a .45-caliber handgun, which he blasted repeatedly at his son, who is now 23 years old.

After about 1 1/2 hours of deliberating, jurors acquitted the father, finding he acted in self-defense and that the son started the conflict.

"You bring a gun, you act like that, you have to pay a price," defense attorney Martin Regan argued Monday during closing arguments. "If you want to kill him, you put a bullet through his head or his heart."

The four-day trial at Orleans Parish Criminal District Court included much testimony about the broken relationship between the son and father, complete with allegations that James Frazier was more deadbeat than dad and that he abandoned his children when they were toddlers.

Regan went after the son, depicting him as a liar who wanted his father in prison for leaving him paralyzed. The jury heard that Eric Frazier had spent time locked up in a juvenile facility as a teenager, having made threats to his mother and sister. Regan referred to Eric as "junior" and said he had "mental problems," while repeating that his own client had no previous criminal record.

"This man loves his family," Regan told the jury. "He thinks the world of them."

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Rogers, Arkansas

From Northwest Arkansas’ of March 27, 2007
Man Shoots Intruder

A confrontation between a man in his home and an intruder ended badly Monday night -- for the intruder.

Joshua Nicholson, 26, 425 Sheppard Road in Avoca, was asleep when someone broke into his home through the back door, according to a Benton County Sheriff's Office news release.

Upon hearing a disturbance, Nicholson grabbed his gun, a .380-caliber pistol, and walked down the hallway. Nicholson saw a man entering the residence and fired one shot, believing he hit the man, according to police.

Also in the home at the time were Marty Martin, 31, Nicholson's roommate; Sarah Enkler, 25, and her two children. Enkler and her two children were staying at the residence to escape an abusive relationship with her husband, according to police.

Richard Deshields, 37, Enkler's husband, checked himself into a hospital in Joplin, Mo., suffering from a gunshot wound. Joplin Police Department officials contacted the Benton County Sheriff's Office.

Officials with the Sheriff's Office have requested the Joplin Police Department arrest Deshields in connection with a felony charge of residential burglary and a misdemeanor charge of first-degree criminal mischief. Deshields will be transported to Benton County as soon as his condition allows, the release states.

There are currently no charges pending for Nicholson.
Dallas, Texas

From Dallas’ of March 27, 2007
Police: Business Owner Shoots Burglar In Head

Alleged Burglar Listed In Critical Condition

Police say an east Dallas auto-body garage owner shot back at a burglar, hitting him in the head Tuesday morning.

Following up on an alarm call, the owner pulled into the driveway of his business at about 6:30 a.m. at Hunnicut Road and Lawnview Avenue still wearing his pajamas. The owner got out of his vehicle and saw two men breaking into his business, Underground Bodyworks.

One of the men pulled out a gun and started shooting, and the owner pulled out his gun and returned fire, officials said. One of the alleged robbers was shot in the head and was transported to Baylor Medical Center in Dallas where he is listed in critical condition.

The business owner was able to hold the second man at bay until police arrived.

Witnesses to the shooting said several shots were fired and that the business owner did the right thing by returning fire.

"I heard the first shot and I think the burglar shot at him first and he started shooting back. I heard 6 or 8 shots," said witness L.C. Adams. "He was shook up a little bit. He was quiet -- he wasn't saying too much to anybody. He was probably in shock, you know, but, he did the right thing."

Investigators are talking to a number of witnesses to the shooting, including the business owner.

Officials have not said if the business owner will face any charges.
San Antonio, Texas

From of March 27, 2007
Gunshot victim may be tied to attempted S. Side robbery

Police are trying to determine if a man rushed to a local hospital with a gunshot wound was injured while attempting to robbery (sic) a South Side store.

An armed man walked into the E Z Discount Tobacco Center in the 3000 block of E. Southcross Boulevard Monday night demanding money.

The store clerk grabbed a gun and fired at the suspect. The robber fled the scene empty handed.

A short time later, police received a call for a shooting victim near the store.

Investigators are reviewing the store's surveillance tape for possible clues, as well as determining if the man shot was the same guy that ran from the store.
From San Antonio’s of March 27, 2007
Fighting Back: Thief Gets A Stomach Full of Lead

Police say a would-be robber picked the wrong store clerk to threaten.

According to officers, the suspected robber tried to hold up a cigarette store on the 3300 block of East Southcross at gunpoint Monday night.

The crime didn't go as he expected. The clerk had a gun of his own and shot the man in the stomach.

Police say the suspect ran to a nearby house for help. His friends decided his wounds were too severe and called EMS.

The suspect is now in critical condition at Brooke Army Medical Center. He will be charged with aggravated robbery.

Police say no charges will be filed against the store clerk.
Tulsa, Oklahoma

From Tulsa’s of March 27, 2007
Gunshot Scares Away Burglary Suspect

A burglary victim chases off a suspect with his gun overnight in Tulsa. It happened around 12:45 a.m. Tuesday in the 2300 North Boston.

Tulsa Police say a man heard someone messing with his car outside his home. He grabbed his gun and fired a couple of warning shots into the ground. Police say the suspect ran off and tried to break into a home a couple of blocks away.

Tulsa Police officers searched the area for some time but never found the suspect.
Jacksonville, Florida

From of March 27, 2007
Judge pulls pistol in court

A scuffle below his bench was out of sight, so he grabbed his gun as a precaution.

A Jacksonville judge pulled a handgun in his courtroom after a spectator attacked a defendant.

The fracas occurred Friday after a crime victim's father hurdled a railing and punched the handcuffed defendant.

Circuit Judge John Merrett then handed his gun to a clerk for safekeeping when he realized bailiffs had subdued the attacker. He met with the man in his chambers and later ordered him released without bail even though he was charged with a felony and two misdemeanors.

Merrett said Monday he would do the same thing again if a similar situation arose in his courtroom. He said he never put his finger on the trigger or pointed the gun at anyone.

But Duval County Public Defender Bill White said the incident was scary enough for lawyers in the courtroom that he plans to talk to the chief judge about disarming the judges.

Most judges in Duval County have concealed weapons permits and have gone through firearms training even if they don't carry a gun. Merrett, a former assistant state attorney, said he has had extensive firearms training.

State Attorney Harry Shorstein said the judge committed no crime.

Merrett, who took office in January after his election in November, was presiding over a court hearing involving Derrick Kendall McNiel, 21, charged with molesting a child. The judge said the victim's father, seeing the defendant for the first time, leapt over the railing and charged McNiel, who was cuffed and shackled.

A police report said he landed several punches and threatened to kill McNiel. It took five bailiffs to restore order. The Times-Union isn't identifying the man because doing so might identify his child.

Merrett said because of the way his courtroom is configured, he couldn't see the scuffle below his bench, so he drew his gun as a precaution.

"I didn't know if he was going after me or the bailiffs or the defendant," the judge said.

Merrett said he held the gun at his side while he peered over the bench. Once he saw that the man was subdued, he said he handed the gun to his courtroom clerk and asked her to lock it in a drawer. He said he did that because the only way for him to get out of the courtroom was to walk past the man and the officers.

"I was stuck," the judge said.

He praised bailiffs, who are armed, for reacting quickly to protect the courtroom.

Merrett said he had the victim's father, who had not been arrested, brought to his chambers where he calmed him down and told him to leave the courthouse if he couldn't control his emotions. Later, when police charged the man with felony aggravated assault and misdemeanor battery, Merrett had him brought back to court so he could release him on his own recognizance.

Merrett said while he doesn't condone the attack, he can't blame the man for doing what he did.

White said the incident easily could have escalated into a dangerous situation, and Merrett's gun added to the potential danger.

"It's very disconcerting for a lawyer to be in the line of fire," he said.

White also questioned the judge's decision to talk to the father and release him because he witnessed the attack and could be called to testify.

He said he plans to talk to Chief Circuit Judge Donald Moran about preventing judges from carrying guns in the courtroom or at least declaring that they are armed.

Moran said he would take such a request under consideration but said part of the problem is the design of Merrett's courtroom.

The tiny courtroom was designed for civil cases and hasn't generally been used for criminal proceedings until this year when caseloads required adding a felony judge.

The chief judge said he encourages all the judges to receive firearms training and obtain concealed weapons permits.
Columbus, Ohio

From Columbus’ of March 27, 2007
Resident, Suspect Open Fire During Apparent Home Invasion

Two men are in the hospital Tuesday morning after a shooting at an east side apartment.

According to police, three men tried to kick-in a door at an apartment on Little Bend Circle, NBC 4's Mike Bowersock reported.

One man inside the home apparently had a gun and opened fire at the robbery suspects, striking one of them. Then, police said, one of the robbery suspects fired back, hitting one of the residents.

Although the investigation is ongoing, detectives weren't ruling out the possibility that the two groups of men knew each other.

"Don't know for sure at this point – I'd say they probably do know each other," said Columbus police Det. Art Hughes. "Everything's still under investigation. We have other detectives down at the station questioning everybody."

According to Hughes, the resident who was shot was in critical condition, and the suspect who was wounded is in stable condition. He said both men would be interviewed when their conditions improve.

Police said the other robbery suspects were apprehended at a nearby Meijer store following the shooting.
Scappoose, Oregon

From Portland’s of March 22, 2007
Neighbor claims he fatally shot dog in self defense

Police don't believe charges will be brought against a Scappoose man who fatally shot his neighbor's Rottweiler.

The 4-year-old dog, named Dozer, died at DoveLewis Animal Hospital in Portland following the Wednesday night shooting.

The neighbor, Harold Peck, is claiming he shot the dog in self defense.

He told investigators that he and his 3-year-old son were trapped in their car as Dozer snarled outside. After they made it inside the home, Peck grabbed a gun before he went out to his mailbox. He shot Dozer on a driveway he shares with the family of the dog's owner.

Peck told investigators the dog charged him from about 70 yards away. When it got to about 10 feet away and still didn't stop, Peck shot the dog, according to Roger Kadell of Columbia County Animal Control.

Kadell said the dog's owner, Don Reed, had been warned last year to control his Rottweiler.

Following the shooting, Reed claimed the shooting was unjustified.

According to Reed, Dozer was barking at a neighbor and the neighbor pulled out a pistol and shot the dog. "I just saw blood running down his chest and I said 'you shot my dog, didn't you?" Reed said. "I can't believe it - just because he was barking at him."

It will be up to the district attorney to decide whether to press criminal charges. But the animal control officer said that in similar cases the use of force has been upheld.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Taunton, Massachusetts

From the March 26, 2007 South Coast Today:
TAUNTON - A jury found Charles D. Chieppa, 57, not guilty of second-degree murder for the killing of a suspected burglar in 2004.

Jurors needed just over 3½ hours to return the verdict in a case where all parties say intent was the most crucial issue.

Mr. Chieppa remained impassive as the verdict was read. His family members, who filled up one side of the gallery, hugged each other and pulled out cell phones to share the news after court was dismissed.

The family of the slain burglar, Frank Pereira Jr. reacted in a manner just as emotional. His father, sisters and long-time companion wept at the verdict. As they exited the courtroom, sister Missy Cimbron yelled “you (expletive deleted) murderer” in Mr. Chieppa’s direction. Once outside the courtroom they pleaded with a victim witness advocate for any further legal recourse.

Defense Attorney Kevin Reddington packed up a box of evidence with Mr. Chieppa as the courtroom emptied out. Picking up the weapon Mr. Chieppa shot Mr. Pereira with, a semi-automatic Walther P38 handgun, he said “I’ll hang on to this for now.”

Earlier today witnesses in the case have said Mr. Chieppa awoke at about 4 a.m. June 17, 2004, to the sounds of an intruder in his 134 Ashley Blvd. home. After waking a tenant who rented a second-floor apartment, Mr. Chieppa went to his backyard with a semi-automatic handgun, according to testimony. There, he encountered Mr. Pereira, 24, who had apparently broken into Mr. Chieppa’s basement, according to testimony in the case.

Mr. Pereira was seen fleeing from Mr. Chieppa’s yard before collapsing in the street with a fatal bullet wound, witnesses said.

The intent behind that shooting took center stage in court today, with the prosecution saying it was anger, the defense saying it was fear, and Judge E. Susan Garsh telling jurors that whatever they decided about Mr. Chieppa’s motive would determine whether he faced murder or a lesser charge.

In his closing argument, prosecutor Bill McCauley said the circumstances behind the shooting show Mr. Chieppa’s intent. He pointed out that the defendant fired four rounds, and that the state Medical Examiner’s Officer determined that Mr. Pereira was shot in the back. Of the two shots that hit him, the fatal one entered through his back and exited his chest.

“This was anger, this wasn’t fear. He reacted that night in anger, it wasn’t fearful,” he said.

The prosecutor accused Mr. Chieppa of choosing to “take the law into his own hands,” saying he “decided if there was going to be a problem in his property, he would take care of it.”

Additionally, Mr. Chieppa’s tenant heard him yelling, swearing and asking if Mr. Pereira was trying to break into his house, Mr. McCauley said. However, that witness gave several accounts of the shooting in court last week, prompting Judge Garsh to later say his testimony was damaged.

As he has throughout the trial, defense attorney Kevin J. Reddington told the jury today that his client, a decorated Vietnam veteran, believed he was in mortal danger and that he was protecting himself when he fired on Mr. Pereira.

“When you consider his state of mind, when you consider the circumstances, this was a justifiable homicide by a citizen protecting himself,” he said.
Benton Harbor, Michigan

From the South Bend (IN) Tribune of March 26, 2007
Benton Harbor teenager dead after apparent home break-in

A Benton Harbor teenager is dead after a shooting Monday morning. It happened just before 10 a.m. at 227 Hastings Ave., about a block from Benton Harbor High School.

Police are investigating the case as a possible home break-in and are holding the homeowner at the Berrien County Jail for questioning.

Officers say they were initially called there by neighbors who heard several shots being fired. After investigating they found the body of an 18- or 19-year-old boy, shot at least once in the chest near a back window of the home.

As of Monday evening, police were not releasing the victim’s name or the homeowner’s name. They believe the teen was not alone and may have been with two to three other people trying to break into the home, but at this point that is only a theory.

If it turns out the teenager was, in fact, breaking into the house, the homeowner would likely not face charges because it would be a case of self-defense.
Idaho Falls, Idaho

From Idaho Falls’ of March 25, 2007
Double Shooting In Idaho Falls

Idaho Falls Police are investigating a shooting that left two men injured last night.

Police say the fight started at the Royal Crown, a bar in downtown Idaho Falls.

Two men partnered up in an argument with another man.

The lone man went home to his apartment on north water in Idaho Falls.

Police say it was minutes after he got home, around one in the morning that the two other men showed up at his apartment.

Another fight broke between the three and the man who lives at the apartment fired two rounds from a 357 magnum. Officers say one man was shot in the stomach; the other was shot in the leg.

They drove themselves to EIRMC and the shooter immediately called 9-1-1...claiming he shot the two in self-defense.

Idaho Falls Police are still investigating who the suspects or victims are in this case. They haven't released any names. The last we heard, one man had been released from the hospital and the other was in fair condition.
From Idaho Falls’ of April 3, 2007
Shooting Victims Arrested For Assault

Two people have been arrested and charged in connection with a double shooting that happened a week ago in Idaho Falls.

There is an interesting twist, the actual shooter was not charged. The two men who were shot are in jail.

Brian Swacina and Joseph Sollender were arrested. Each is charged with one count of burglary and one count of aggravated assault.

The shooter says he shot Swacina and Sollender in self defense.

According to the police report, Swacina and Sollender followed the shooter home after a confrontation at a downtown Idaho Falls bar.

If convicted, the two face a possible sentence of 15 years behind bars.
Hurricane, Utah

From the Salt Lake City Tribune of March 26, 2007
Millard, Washington residents fire back, leaving one attacker dead

Homeowners in Millard and Washington counties repelled invaders with firearms this weekend, leaving one attacker dead.

Police say the man who was killed had reportedly forced his way into a Hurricane home to beat the occupant with a metal pipe.

A similar encounter turned deadly in Washington County, where police say two men - who investigators believe meant to harm someone - forced their way into a Hurricane home on Saturday about 6:45 p.m. and assaulted the occupant with a pipe.

The victim was badly beaten before he grabbed a handgun and fatally shot one of the attackers, said Hurricane Police Sgt. Brandon Buell.

The other man fled and remains at large.

Police did not release the names of the people involved in the Hurricane assault.

The investigation is not complete, but Buell said the shooting appears to be self-defense. He declined to say whether the residents in Millard and Washington counties acted appropriately, only that people have the "right to protect themselves from injury or death."
See previous post for the first incident.

From the Salt Lake City Tribune of April 15, 2007
Charges filed against mayor's nephew in shooting

The man shot an alleged intruder, but is charged with illegal possession of a firearm and drugs

Charges have been filed against three people, including the mayor's nephew, in connection with a shooting here that left an alleged intruder dead three weeks ago.

Deputy County Attorney Ryan Shaum said convicted felon Danny Dutton, who is accused in the shooting, was charged Friday with possession of a weapon by a restricted person, a second-degree felony, and two counts of possession of a controlled substance.

Dutton is the nephew of Hurricane Mayor Tom Hirschi.

Court papers say Dutton shot and killed Aaron Barbosa during a March break-in at Dutton's apartment. Barbosa hit Dutton on the arm with a steel pipe when Dutton opened the apartment door, police say.

The press releases also stated that the alleged shooter acted in self-defense, even though the investigative report had not yet been handed over to the Washington County Attorney's Office.
From the Salt Lake Tribune of September 4, 2007
Catch-22: Man who killed intruder acted justifiably but will stand trial for illegally possessing the gun

Authorities have determined Danny Dutton acted in self-defense when he shot and killed a violent intruder at his Hurricane apartment earlier this year.

But in a case of legal Catch-22, Dutton has been ordered to stand trial for possessing the gun he used to kill Aaron Rondan Barbosa during a March 24 break-in.

Because of a 2004 felony conviction for cultivating marijuana, Dutton - a nephew of Hurricane Mayor Tom Hirschi - is prohibited from possessing firearms.

Following a June preliminary hearing, defense attorney Gary Pendleton filed a motion to dismiss the charge, citing case law recognizing that even a convicted felon may be entitled to use a gun in a life-or-death situation.

Deputy Washington County Attorney Eric Gentry countered that the motion was premature and that prosecutors are not required at this stage to negate Dutton's claim of self-defense.

Gentry also noted that during the preliminary hearing, the state had produced evidence that Dutton possessed the gun before, during and after the shooting, and was sufficiently aware of its location that he was able to immediately retrieve it.

Judge G. Rand Beacham last week agreed with prosecutors that the defense motion was premature, but he said the issue may be raised again prior to trial.

A scheduling hearing for Dutton is set for Sept. 13. If convicted of the second-degree felony weapons charge, he faces up to 15 years in prison.

Dutton is also charged with three class B misdemeanor counts of illegal possession of a controlled substance in connection with prescription medication allegedly found by police at his apartment following the shooting.

The shooting episode began when Barbosa and another man knocked on the door of the apartment Dutton, 22, shares with a male roommate.

When Dutton answered the door, Barbosa entered and began beating Dutton with a metal pipe, breaking Dutton's arm, according to court documents.

Dutton shouted at the intruders that they had "the wrong man," but Barbosa continued beating Dutton, who retreated to the kitchen, grabbed a .357-caliber handgun and shot Barbosa.

The other man, Juan Gonzalez, fled in a vehicle driven by Lucinda Ann Corral, but later confirmed Dutton's version of events.

Gonzalez also told police that Corral and Barbosa were "discussing payment after the job was done," as they were driving to Dutton's residence, according to court documents.

Corral, 30, has pleaded guilty to second-degree felony aggravated assault and faces up to 15 years in prison when she is sentenced Sept. 24 by Judge Beacham.

Gonzalez has not been charged, according to court records.

Also being prosecuted in connection with the shooting is Dutton's roommate, Shane Leland Norris, 27, and Bow-Dee Woodgeard, 20.

Norris is charged with third-degree felony drug possession, and class B misdemeanor counts of drug possession and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Woodgeard, 20, who has a prior felony conviction for manufacture of a controlled substance, is charged with second-degree felony possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person.

Meanwhile, Dutton has been charged in federal court with being a felon in possession of a handgun and ammunition on May 7 in Washington County, a crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Sugarville, Utah

From the Salt Lake City Tribune of March 26, 2007
Millard, Washington residents fire back, leaving one attacker dead

Homeowners in Millard and Washington counties repelled invaders with firearms this weekend, leaving one attacker dead.

The first attack happened before sunrise in Sugarville, a tiny town in northern Millard County. When a man slinked into the victim's home on Friday about 5 a.m., his entry awakened a woman inside.

The role of victim and attacker then flip-flopped when the woman retrieved a shotgun and chased the man out of the house. As he fled with two others, she reportedly shot at them from a distance. Sheriff Robert Dekker said no one was hurt.

Deputies scoured nearby structures and a field with search dogs Saturday, but didn't find the three men. Investigators say the men were last seen in a dark-colored pickup.

The investigation is not complete, but Buell said the shooting appears to be self-defense. He declined to say whether the residents in Millard and Washington counties acted appropriately, only that people have the "right to protect themselves from injury or death."
See subsequent post for second incident.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Bexar County, Texas

From San Antonio’s of March 25, 2007
Man Shot in Home Break-In

A man caught breaking into an east side home was shot in the back by someone who lived there early Saturday, Bexar County Sheriff’s deputies told News 4 WOAI.

The homeowner caught the burglar close to 6 a.m. Saturday inside his home on Little Port Drive, authorities said. The two men began to fight.

The homeowner’s roommate woke up and fired a gun at the intruder, officials said. The man was hit in the back with pellets, deputies said.

The homeowner and roommate are not expected to face any charges, deputies said.

“It was in self-defense,” Sgt. Chris Burchell with Bexar County Sheriff’s Office said of the shooting. “They also were protecting each other.”

The intruder was recovering at Brooke Army Medical Center Saturday night. No word on his condition.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

St. George, Utah

From the St. George Spectrum of March 24, 2007
Police search for wounded burglar

A statewide alert has been broadcast urging police to be on the lookout for a truck with two men in it.

According to the broadcast, the two men allegedly attempted to burglarize a home near Delta.

\The homeowner awoke to their sound and chased them from the residence with a shotgun.

Police reports indicate the homeowner fired two blasts from the shotgun with one shot possibly hitting one of the men in the back and the other striking a truck the men were riding in.

The vehicle is described only as a dark truck.
Hickory Hill, Tennessee

From Memphis’ of March 23, 2007
Man Shot During Armed Robbery

A good Samaritan is in the hospital after getting shot by a robber. The Hickory Hill business owner was trying to defend a couple during a robbery and that’s when the robber shot him.

It happened just before 4:00 p.m. on Friday, March 23, 2007 outside the Villsenor Taqueria at Ridgeway and Winchester.

The business owner saw two men trying to rob a Hispanic couple walking out of the Immigration Services building next door. He came outside with his gun and then he got shot.

Police say a family member took the shooting victim to a hospital. The police say the two armed robbers got away in a black Ford Expedition. Police say robberies like this have happened before at this location because Hispanics without bank accounts go to that INS office to cash paychecks and are targeted by robbers in the parking lot.
Clark County, Kentucky

From Lexington’s of March 23, 2007
Pair Sought In Home Invasion Attempt

Police are searching for a man and woman who broke into a Clark County home Friday morning but were chased away when the homeowner fired a gun at the ceiling.

The incident happened at about 9:30 at a home on Athens-Boonesboro Road. Police say the suspects kicked in a back basement door, went upstairs, then attempted to kick open another door.

However, the homeowner, Frank Gibson, was behind the door, and fired a warning shot into the ceiling. The suspects fled the home, then fled the scene in a green Jeep Cherokee.

The suspects did not get away with any cash or property.

Gibson was not hurt in the incident.
Chippewa County, Wisconsin

From Eau Claire‘s of March 23, 2007
Business Owner Prevents Bar Break-In

Burglars target a local bar after-hours, but they don't get far. The owner fired a shot and ran them off.

It happened early Thursday morning at Reilly's Crescent Tavern. That's north of Cadott in Chippewa County. Investigators say they believe no one was hit by the round because they found a bullet that matches the bar owner's gun.

The sheriff's office says it's the second time tavern owners have confronted a burglar in the last month. Someone broke into a bar in Eagleton last week.
Aurora, Colorado

From the March 24, 2007 Denver Rocky Mountain News:
A carjacking victim may have turned the tables late Friday when he shot the suspect in the head as the man drove down the street.

Denver detectives and Aurora police were trying to sort out a violent sequence of events they said involved a carjacking, a possible kidnapping and a traffic collision in which the carjacking suspect slammed into another vehicle carrying five people. The ordeal began about 9 p.m. in the 9800 block of East Girard Avenue in Denver, Detective Virginia Quinones said.

She was only able to provide sketchy details but said the vehicle was carjacked with the owner inside. "The vehicle owner somehow has access to a gun and shot the person in the head," she said. The car owner then managed to get out of his vehicle while the wounded man continued driving. As he drove on South Havana Street, the man crashed into another car at East Kentucky Avenue. Five people riding in that vehicle suffered minor injuries. After the collision, the suspect fled on foot and was captured after a police dog found him in the back of a Budget Rental Car business in the 600 block of South Havana Street.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Fresno, California

From March 23, 2007 KFSN channel 30:
03/23/2007 - A man is recovering from gunshots after police say he broke into a home in Central Fresno.

The homeowner had set up a surveillance camera after a previous burglary just days ago, both at his home and at a detached studio apartment.

Thursday night, he fired at least two shots at a man trying to break in to the studio.

The wounded man was taken to University Medical Center in Fresno. His injuries are serious, but he's expected to survive.

Police are looking into whether the shooting was justified.
Miami, Florida

From Miami's The Miami Herald of March 23, 2007
Man having coffee on porch shoots intruder

A man having his morning cup of coffee on the back porch pulled a handgun and shot an intruder Friday, Miami police said.

The incident happened at 8:48 a.m. in the 1100 block of Northwest 37th Street. John James was relaxing when, he told police, a man broke into the fenced yard and threatened to assault him and break into the home.

James grabbed the .22 Magnum and opened fire, striking the intruder multiple times.

''I guess he was trying to get what he wanted to get,'' said the shooter's brother, John Lee James. ``And he got more than that. He got a bullet in the ass.''

The intruder, described as heavyset by neighbors, was taken to the hospital. His condition was not immediately known.

Police were talking to the shooter about what happened. His brother John Lee, with whom he lives, rushed home from work when he learned of the incident.

''I'm just happy my brother is safe and nothing more serious happened,'' John Lee James said.

Hamilton, Ohio

From Hamilton's WCPO of March 23, 2007

Hamilton Man Kills Intruder

Police say a Hamilton man shot and killed an intruder early Friday morning.

It happened in the 900 block of Bishop Avenue around 1:30 a.m.

Police say when they got to the scene, the resident said someone he had just shot someone who broke into his home.

Officers found the alleged intruder dead on the floor.

The next step is for prosecutors to announce if the resident, whose name has not been released, will be charged.

Earlier this week, a Covington man was not charged after he shot and killed a man who broke into his home along Delmar Place.

From The Oxford Press of March 24, 2007

Man shoots, kills burglar during home invasion

A Hamilton man was shot five times early Friday morning after striking a resident with a sledgehammer during a home invasion in Lindenwald, according to Hamilton police.

Officers responded to a home on the 900 block of Bishop Avenue just after 1:30 a.m. Friday to the report of a shooting. On arrival, Jamie R. Buck, 33, told them a man demanding money and jewelry broke through his kitchen door with a sledgehammer, according to a Hamilton police report that chronicles an aggravated burglary, but does not mention the shooting.

Buck said he shot the man, later identified as Millard Brandenburg, in self defense.

"He's laying dead in my kitchen," Buck said on the 911 tape. "He tried to kill me."

Buck returned home just after 9 a.m. Friday from The Fort Hamilton Hospital with a bandage wrapped around his head.

"Everything's OK," he told reporters. "I'm fine."

Results of an autopsy performed Friday at the Butler County morgue indicate Brandenburg was shot once in the head, three times in the torso and once in the flank, said county Coroner Dr. Richard Burkhardt, who added that "(Brandenburg) was intoxicated."

An exterior door at Buck's residence was broken, Burkhardt said, and the resident was not only hit with a sledgehammer, but also with a framed picture off his wall.

"He (Brandenburg) grabbed a picture and hit him (Buck) in the head," the coroner said.

Lee North, a friend of the resident seen leaving the home Friday morning, said the intruder hit Buck in the head with the hammer and that Buck retreated back to his bedroom to get his gun.

North, who had been inside talking with the resident's relatives, said there was a trail of blood between the kitchen and the bedroom.

Buck also called for police early Monday morning during an incident at Bob's Cafe on Hooven Avenue. According to a police report, Buck said he attempted to stop an unidentified man from beating a woman and when he called for police he was attacked, forced to the ground and stomped. Buck suffered an injured eye, jaw, mouth and head, according to the report. Hamilton police did not know whether the bar fight was connected to the break-in at Buck's home.

Brandenburg has a lengthy criminal record that includes arrests for ethnic intimidation, aggravated menacing, drug abuse, forgery, fleeing and eluding and assault. Butler County Prosecutor Robin Piper said Brandenburg recently had been released from prison.

Piper said he was consulted about the case just hours after the shooting occurred. Detectives and prosecutors are still looking at the physical evidence, but Piper said he hasn't seen any evidence inconsistent with Buck's self-defense version of the incident.

"In a case like this, it is not unlikely that a grand jury would review it," Piper said. "But I don't see anything right now that doesn't point to self defense."

Click to listen to 911 call

Thursday, March 22, 2007

North Platte, Nebraska

From the North Platte Telegraph of March 21, 2007
NP woman shoots intruder

A 37-year-old North Platte man was shot several times and killed early Wednesday morning after he reportedly forced his way into a mobile home at 2801 West 19th.

According to Lt. Rick Ryan of the North Platte Police Department, a call came in at 2:30 a.m. on Wednesday from the 2800 block of West 20th, reporting shots being fired in the area.

Ryan said Tiffany Howell, 19, told officers that she had shot an intruder but didn’t know if he was alive. After shooting the man, she reportedly fled through the back door and went to a neighbor’s house.

Police found the man lying inside the front door of the home and identified him as David Allen, 37, of North Platte. Ryan said paramedics were called to the scene, and they determined Allen had died at the scene.

A search warrant was issued, and police located a semi-automatic rifle and several spent cartridges in the home. The man’s body has been transported to Scottsbluff for an autopsy.

Ryan said they will not know exactly how many times Allen was shot until the autopsy is completed. He said the incident is being investigated at this point as a homicide.

“We investigate all deaths like this as a homicide,” Ryan said.

Howell was home alone at the time of the incident, according to Ryan. He said the home belongs to Howell’s boyfriend, the person Allen was looking for when he tried to enter the house.

“They were acquaintances,” Ryan said.

Ryan said Howell talked to Allen through the front door. She told Allen that her boyfriend was not home and asked him leave. Allen eventually convinced Howell to open the front door.

Howell opened the door slightly to talk to Allen, according to Ryan, but she still didn’t let him into the house. When she tried to shut the door, Allen allegedly put up his hands and pushed the door open, entering the residence.

Howell was holding a Ruger Mini-14 .223 semi-automatic rifle when Allen entered the house. Ryan said Allen became rude to Howell and refused to leave, so Howell aimed the weapon at him and told him to get out of the house.

“He refused to leave the house and he went after her, at which time she fired several shots,” Ryan said.
From the North Platte Bulletin of March 31, 2007
Shooting investigation leads to burglary charges

The investigation into the shooting death of 37-year-old David Allen of North Platte unexpectedly led police to solve a string of recent burglaries.

Allen was allegedly shot to death by Tiffany Howell, 19, at 2801 West Ninth Street in North Platte March 21. The police said Allen entered the trailer house of Howell’s boyfriend and that Howell shot him several times with a Ruger Mini-14 .223-caliber rifle.

Howell ran to a neighbor’s house, dropping the rifle in the back yard.

While investigating the shooting, police discovered at least 24 items that they suspected had been stolen from various businesses recently.

The police, who had been investigating the burglaries, realized that the merchandise stored at the crime scene might be stolen loot from the burglaries.

The owner of the trailer, who rented the trailer to Howell's boyfriend, told the police that Mitchell T. Pappas had asked him if he could store the merchandise there.

The investigation revealed that the merchandise was allegedly stolen from area businesses.

The police investigated and learned that Pappas had allegedly been bragging about doing the break-ins.

Pappas was charged with burglarizing Kohler Trailer Sales, 3821 Rodeo Road on November 10; Troyer Enterprises, 702 N. Bailey on November 20 and Racing Components at 302 West Eugene on December 14, 2006.

Pappas could face a maximum 60-years imprisonment if convicted of all three crimes. He is being held in the Lincoln County Jail on a $50,000 bond and his next court hearing was April 5.

Lt. Rick Ryan said the investigation into the March 21 shooting was still underway and that they still awaited the autopsy results.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Taladega, Alabama

From the Taladega Daily Home of March 21, 2007
Drive-by shooting suspects shot

An apparently botched drive-by shooting on Old Shocco Road Wednesday morning led to two Talladega residents suffering shotgun wounds before being arrested by Talladega police.

Demetrius Lamar Gooden, 23, 97 Cleve Lane, and Antoine Jamel Freeman, 18, 1822 Old Shocco Road, were each charged with one count of shooting into an occupied building. Gooden was also charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance (crack cocaine) and Freeman was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree.

Gooden’s bond was set at $1,500 by Circuit Judge Chad Woodruff. Freeman’s bond was set at $10,500.

According to Police Chief Alan Watson, at about 9:40 a.m. Wednesday, three suspects fired several shots with an automatic handgun into the residence of Dexter Lamar Swain, 27, at 1480 Old Shocco Road, Apartment 7, from a car. Swain’s brother, Maurice Swain, 32, was also in the apartment at the time.

Although neither of the Swain brothers was hit, bullets did damage two walls in the apartment, the front door, a home entertainment center and a 19-inch television set.

One of the Swain brothers returned fire with a 12-gauge shotgun, hitting Gooden in the right leg and Freeman in the right hand. The third suspect was not hit.

The suspects then went to Kelly Park, Watson said.

According to Detective John McCoy, who testified at the initial appearance, the Swains called police and gave them a description and possible destination for the vehicle the suspects fled in.

McCoy found Gooden, Freeman, a male subject and a female subject getting out of the car with shotgun damage and into another vehicle, probably to go to the hospital. Gooden’s drug charge stems from crack cocaine found in a pack of cigarettes at that time. Freeman’s marijuana charge stemmed from a small baggie in plain sight in the back seat of the car, between his feet.

Two pistols were also recovered in the yard of the residence where the suspects were changing cars.

Gooden and Freeman were taken to the emergency room at Citizens Baptist Medical Center, where the former eventually refused treatment and was arrested immediately.

Freeman’s hand wound was treated in the emergency room, and he was placed under arrest as soon as he was discharged, Watson said.

Bond was set at $10,000 each for the shooting into an occupied dwelling charge, $5,000 for Gooden’s drug charge and $500 for Freeman’s marijuana charge. Should they make bond and get out of jail, they will be subject to random drug testing and are barred from carrying firearms of any kind.

Watson said the third suspect is known, and added the Swains had not been charged with anything. The investigation remained ongoing Wednesday afternoon.
Aurora, Illinois

From the March 21, 2007 Chicago Tribune:
Police in west suburban Aurora are investigating a home invasion this morning in which a homeowner shot at and possibly wounded an intruder, who then fled the scene.

The incident began before 9 a.m. when a young man in a dark hooded sweat shirt forced his way into a two-story single-family home on the 900 block of Zenner Avenue on the city's northeast side.

The 53-year-old unidentified homeowner, who had been awakened earlier by the repeated ringing of his doorbell, answered the door and saw the suspect walking away, police said. The suspect then allegedly walked back to the house and began kicking the front door.

The homeowner went to his bedroom, called 911 and retrieved a small-caliber handgun, police said. The resident heard the suspect enter the home, and he confronted him in the hall outside the bedroom.

The homeowner fired two shots at the man from about 10 feet away, possibly hitting the intruder, who fled the house, police said.
From the of April 26, 2007
Radio report, overheard conversation lead to burglary charges

A 20-year-old Aurora man has been charged with burglary after an alert citizen put together a conversation he overheard in a hospital emergency room with a news story he heard on the radio.

Police say suspect Daniel Cerda of the 900 block of Rural Street was shot after breaking into a home on the East Side of Aurora on March 21.

According to police, the homeowner had grabbed a gun and called 911 when he heard Cerda at his door. When Cerda confronted him in a hallway, the homeowner fired two shots. Cerda ran away, but after processing the crime scene, police believed the intruder had been shot.

The break in the case came later that afternoon when police received a call from a person who had been in an emergency room at a Chicago hospital and overheard a conversation between Chicago officers and a man who was being treated for gunshot wounds. The man at the hospital heard officers telling the shooting victim — who said he was from Aurora — that his story didn’t make sense. While the witness was driving home, he heard a news story on the radio about shots being fired in an Aurora home invasion. The man called Aurora police and they started an investigation with Chicago police and the hospital.

Cerda was finally located Tuesday, near Liberty Street and Valley Court in Aurora. He had been treated and released at a hospital in Chicago for non-life threatening wounds. Police say further charges are possible.
Somerset, New Jersey

From the March 19, 2007 Home News Tribune:
A man who was the intended victim of an armed robbery head butted his assailant several times, wrestled a handgun away from him, and then had a drug store clerk call police, who took the suspect into custody.

Police said the intended victim in the Sunday afternoon incident ran into a Rite Aid drugstore to get help.

As the man was walking in the area of Lewis Street and Matilda Avenue around 3 p.m., Sante A. Patron, 37, of New Brunswick Avenue in Fords, approached him, brandishing a 9 mm pistol, said. Cpl. Philip Rizzo.

A struggle ensued, and the 28-year-old victim, a Somerset resident, wrestled the weapon away from Patron while head butting him, Rizzo said.

After the suspect fell to the ground, the victim ran into the Rite Aid drug store on the corner of Hamilton Street and Matilda Avenue, advised a clerk to call the police, and handed them the weapon when they arrived. About seven officers responded to the scene.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Beaumont, Texas

From the Beaumont Examiner of March 20, 2007
Auto burglar caught in the act

A Beaumont homeowner held an attempted auto burglar at gunpoint after catching him in the act Tuesday.

The homeowner allegedly caught 26-year-old Beaumont resident Brian Williams trying to burglarize his truck on Kingsley. The homeowner held Williams at gunpoint while a neighbor contacted police. Police arrived and took over, arresting Williams at the scene.

His bond had been set at $500 for the auto burglary. Williams was also held for a parole violation.
San Antonio, Texas

From San Antonio’s of March 20, 2007
Man Shoots Back at Burglar

A man woken up by a burglar managed to get a hold of a gun, and fire back at the would-be thief, News 4 WOAI learned Tuesday.

The burglar broke into the home on Banbridge on the southeast side.

Two bullets tore through the family's home during the break-in. One struck the doorway of the children’s bedroom.

The mother in the home told News 4 WOAI’s Jacqueline Ortiz what happened. The mother did not want to be identified. She told News 4 WOAI she fears the burglar will come back.

"The blinds were down, and he saw the blinds were moving,” the woman said of her husband.

The mother said her husband was sleeping and he awoke to noise outside. She said the burglar tore a screen on one of the windows, and entered the home.

“He heard the noise and saw the hand coming in," the woman said of her husband. The mother and her kids were away for Spring Break at the time of the break-in.

The intruder got halfway in the window, and the husband somehow got the gun out of his hand.

“He grabbed, kicked it and it fell,” the mother said. “He picked it up."

The woman’s husband then fired once at the man who took off running through the backyard, she said.
Cook County, Illinois

From the Chicago Tribune of March 20, 2007
2 wounded in suburban home invasion

Cook County sheriff's police evidence technicians and investigators were on the scene today of a shooting and apparent home invasion near Richton Park in which one of the residents was shot in the foot.

The incident began shortly before 11 p.m. Monday when a masked gunman forced his way into the house in the 6500 block of Sauk Trail Road in unincorporated Rich Township and began shooting, said sheriff's spokeswoman Penny Mateck.

Inside the house were an infant and three adults, including a 22-year-old woman who sustained the gunshot wound in her foot, Mateck said.

One of the other adults in the house had a weapon and returned the gunman's fire, Mateck said. In the exchange, a bullet exited the house and grazed the driver of a vehicle that was passing by, she said.

Neither the driver nor the woman was seriously hurt, Mateck said. The woman, who had left the house sometime after the shooting occurred, either was taken or went on her own to St. James Hospital and Health Care Centers in Chicago Heights where she was reported in good condition, Mateck said. Whether the driver who was grazed by a bullet required treatment was not immediately known, Mateck said.

When sheriff's police arrived at the house they attempted to make contact with the occupants and or the masked gunman but received no response, Mateck said. Not knowing whether the gunman or any of the occupants were still inside the home, police called in the sheriff's SWAT team shortly after 1 a.m. today, she said. At 6 a.m., SWAT team members entered the house and determined it was empty, Mateck said.

Sheriff's police found the original occupants of the house at another location but as of this afternoon were still looking for the masked gunman and attempting to determine a motive for the home invasion, Mateck said.
Bradley County, Tennessee

From Chattanooga’s of March 20, 2007
Update: Bradley Domestic Dispute

Bradley County Sheriff's officers investigated a violent domestic dispute.

The call came Monday night at 314 Peachtree Circle when two 9-1-1 calls were placed from the house shortly after 8 o'clock. The first caller said a man threatened a woman with a knife while the second reported a gunshot.

Deputies found 36 year old Danny J.Catlett with a gunshot wound to his shoulder while 44 year old Gayla Catlett has knife cuts to her clothing. Investigators say the couple was arguing and Danny Catlett threatened his wife with a knife. They say she got a handgun and shot him in the shoulder.

Paramedics airlifted Danny Catlett to Erlanger Medical Center with what appears to be non life-threatening injuries. So far no charges have been filed.
Harris County. Texas

From the Houston Chronicle of March 20, 2007
Burglary suspect fatally shot in Harris County

A man reported to have burglarized an east Harris County steel fabrication firm was fatally shot while an accomplice who may have been injured escaped, the Harris County Sheriff's Department reported.

The report of the shooting came in at 3:53 a.m. and sheriff's homicide investigators still were investigating how the shooting occurred, a spokesman at the department's watch command office said at 5:20 a.m. Who did the shooting and other details of the case were not immediately available.

Kc Steel Fabricators, where the shooting took place, is located near Baytown at 5600 John Martin Road in east Harris County, the spokesman said.
Covington, Kentucky

From the Cincinnati Enquirer of March 20, 2007
Homeowner fatally shoots intruder

Covington police are investigating an early morning shooting in which a homeowner shot and killed an intruder.

Jerry Setzer, 44, a 12-year resident of the home at 329 Delmar Street, shot the intruder about 3:30 a.m., police said.

Police have not yet named the intruder, a white male, pending notification of his family.

He was taken to St. Elizabeth Medical Center South, where he was pronounced dead from the wounds.

The Kenton Commonwealth Attorney's Office is assisting in the investigation.

The Kentucky General Assembly passed a bill last year that permits Kentuckians to use deadly force if they believe themselves to be threatened with death or serious bodily harm inside their homes. Gov. Ernie Fletcher signed the measure into law on April 21, 2006.
From the Cincinnati Enquirer of March 21, 2007
Charges unlikely in intruder case

A man who shot and killed a home intruder early Tuesday probably will not be charged with a crime, according to Kenton Commonwealth's Attorney Rob Sanders.

Jerry Setser, 44, fatally shot Edward T. Cwiakala after the man unlawfully entered Setser's home around 3:30 a.m., according to Covington police.

"While the investigation is ongoing, right now it does not appear that he will be charged in connection with the shooting," Sanders said. "Our preliminary indication is that it is a self-defense case.

Monday, March 19, 2007

McHenry County, Illinois

From Arlington Heights’ Daily Herald of March 19, 2007
Charges dropped against McHenry County man who shot suspected burglar

Faced with the victim’s refusal to testify, McHenry County prosecutors today dismissed charges against a man accused of shooting a teenager he believed was breaking into his vehicle.

The decision to drop the case against Jerry P. Sweat, 42, came after the 18-year-old authorities say he shot indicated he would assert his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination if called to testify about an incident for which he is charged with burglary.

Sweat, of Marengo, faced charges of aggravated battery with a firearm and reckless discharge of a firearm stemming from a Dec. 3 incident in which, authorities say, he awoke at about 4 a.m. to find two teens breaking into a vehicle parked in his driveway.

Instead of calling police, investigators said, Sweat retrieved a rifle, rushed out to his front porch and fired several shots at the burglary suspects, striking one three times.

Sweat declined comment Monday, but his lawyer said his client maintains he did nothing wrong by shooting at the teens.

“It would have been a waste of taxpayers’ money to bring this to trial because they cannot prove their case,” defense attorney Donald Franz said. “My client is not guilty.”

The teen shot in the incident, Patrick K. Gaughan, of Marengo, suffered bullet wounds to the hip, shoulder and hand. Gaughan, however, declined to testify against Sweat Monday because McHenry County prosecutors have charged him with burglary and obstructing justice in the same incident.
Houston, Texas

From March 19, 2007 KHOU-TV:
The incident happened around 2:30 a.m. in the 11200 block of Champion Woods.

The man says he was sleeping when the alarm went off.

He got up to investigate and said he found someone trying to get out through a garage window.

The homeowner said he told the suspect to freeze, but instead the man turned and had something in his hand.

That's when the homeowner shot him.

The suspect later died at an area hospital.

Deputies say the suspect had a knife.

The case has been referred to a grand jury without charges.
Orlando, Florida

From Orlando’s of March 19, 2007
'Studz' Bartender Injured In Shootout With Robber

Police Search For Robber Suspect

A bartender in Orlando, Fla., was hospitalized after being involved in a shootout with a robbery suspect at the bar early Monday, according to police.

Orlando police said an armed man entered the back door of the Studz night club located on Mills as the business was closing Monday morning.

The bartender, who was not named, pulled out a gun and the pair exchanged gunfire, investigators said.

The bar worker was shot and transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Modesto, California

From Sacramento’s of March 17, 2007
Man Killed in Modesto Gas Station Fight

A machete-wielding man was shot and killed after getting into a fight with a group of men and taking a hostage at a Modesto gas station early Saturday, Modesto police officials said.

Richard Perez, 43, was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after the 1 a.m. Saturday shooting at the Valero gas station, 325 Maze Boulevard, Modesto police spokesman Ivan Valencia said.

Witnesses said Perez got into an altercation with up to eight men who drove up to the gas station in two cars. Valencia said Perez took one of the men hostage, holding the machete to the man's throat. One of the man's friends pulled a handgun and allegedly pleaded with Perez to let the man go, Valencia said. After a pair of warning shots, witnesses said the gunman shot Perez several times, allowing the hostage to escape unhurt. Both carloads of men then fled the scene.

Investigators interviewed several witnesses to the confrontation and under the circumstances, the shooting may have been justified, Modesto police detective Dodge Hendee said. Valencia said detectives were looking for the men confronted by Perez, identified as seven or eight black males from 18 to 25 years old.
Montgomery, Alabama

From the Montgomery Advertiser of March 18, 2007
Granny's got a gun

Frances Babington, 65, is a pistol-toting grandma, who says she is a "fighting person."

"I'm the type of person ... (that's) not going to let someone take something from me. I decided I wanted to get the better end of the fight," Babington said.

"When I started carrying the gun, I made it a priority to be instructed by the Montgomery Police Department about how and when to use my gun. To my surprise, the officers spent about 75 percent of the course time teaching how to avoid having to use a weapon but did not neglect the shooting aspects.

"Having said that, you would-be criminals take note! The next time you attempt to rob or break and enter into the home of an elderly, gray-haired lady, it might be me. If you enter my home I would consider my life to be in peril and would not hesitate to blow you out of your socks."

Babington said she and her husband Tom, 65, a retired pharmacist, took the gun-safety class together. Tom was robbed twice as he left work, and Babington had a close call of her own when she worked downtown at the old St. Margaret's Hospital.

Babington was headed to her car in the parking lot after work when she noticed a man walking near her. She said she noticed the man turn suddenly about 12 feet away and came up behind her.

"I reached in my purse grabbed the gun and showed it to him," Babington said. "I looked him directly in his eyes. He turned away. It worked. I didn't have to use it, but it worked. If he had attacked me, I would have felt comfortable using it."

The Babingtons have identical blue steel revolvers, and a gold police shield in their window they got from the Police Department that lets people know trained gunmen protect their property.

Frances Babington believes that anyone seeking to bear arms should do it the right way.

"I think that having a class ought to be part of getting a gun permit," she said. "You've got to know what you're doing with it if you're going to carry it."