Monday, April 7, 2008

Illinois: Stillman Valley houseguest shoots, kills intruder; 2 others sought

Stillman Valley, Illinois

From the Rockford Register Star of April 7, 2008
Stillman Valley houseguest shoots, kills intruder; 2 others sought

uthorities are working this morning to identify a young man who was shot and killed after he broke into a rural home near Stillman Valley, Ogle County Sheriff Gregory Beitel said.

About 11 p.m. Sunday, a man staying at a home in the 9100 block of Meridian Road awakened to the sound of shattered glass and grabbed a handgun after realizing people were inside, Beitel said. The man told deputies at least three people broke into the house, one of whom entered his bedroom and then fled, Beitel said.

The houseguest then left the bedroom and came face to face, Beitel said, with a man aiming a firearm at him. The houseguest then fired twice, killing the man, Beitel said.

“He walked out of the bedroom and there was this guy right in front of him, coming out of the other room,” Beitel said. “He fired in self-defense.”

Beitel said it’s too soon in the investigation to know whether the houseguest will be charged with a crime.

He described the deceased as a young, white man with sandy brown hair and a thin build. He said the man had no identification on him. Deputies recovered a long gun next to the man and a pistol on the floor, several feet from him, Beitel said. Detectives are trying to determine whether those weapons belonged to the man or the homeowner, as they also recovered at least a dozen firearms hidden around the perimeter of the property.

“At this point, we don’t know whether they brought them with them,” Beitel said. “We know the homeowner was an avid sportsman and had a large collection of firearms.”

Officials also are searching for two other men who fled the house, possibly in a vehicle, Beitel said. Late Sunday, a search party including Winnebago County sheriff’s deputies, state troopers and a helicopter scanned the rural area, which is about 2.5 miles north of Stillman Valley, just south of the Winnebago-Ogle county line.

Investigators also will follow leads in Rockford today, he said.

Beitel would not release the name of the houseguest or the homeowner, but described them both as adult men.

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