Saturday, May 30, 2009

Lima, Ohio Burglar Shot

Lima, Ohio

From the May 8, 2009

LIMA - A wannabe burglar may be walking around with a lead reminder of a Friday break-in.

Lima Police believe the man who reportedly broke into a home in the 800 block of West Wayne Street early Friday morning may have been shot by the home's owner.

The incident occurred just before 4 a.m. Friday, according to Lima Police Detective Kent Miller. The home's owner was sitting in his living room, just about an hour after coming home from working third shift, when he heard a bang from the next room. He walked in and saw a man in his house by the front door. The homeowner turned around and grabbed his .22 revolver and yelled at the intruder, who then rushed at him, Miller said. He fired one shot before the would-be burglar fled.

Police believe the bullet may have struck the intruder, but found no blood or other evidence of injury at the scene.

"We think he hit him mainly because of the distance between them. He was just three or four feet away, but we didn't find any blood," Miller said.

Police have notified hospitals around the region to keep an eye out for a man seeking treatment for a gunshot wound. Miller said he believes if the man is wounded he may try to treat himself or ask friends for help.

Female Home Intruder Shot

Columbia, South Carolina

From the May 28, 2009 Columbia The State:

A 29-year-old woman who broke windows at a house behind Dorn VA Medical Center in Columbia was shot in the head by the homeowner, a Richland County sheriff’s spokesman said.

The bullet grazed the woman, who was slightly injured, the spokesman said Tuesday.

The woman who broke the windows at the house at 618 Hatrick Road was trying to get in and will face charges, the spokesman said.

The homeowner will not face charges, the spokesman said. Officials did not disclose the names since no charges had been filed.

Oklahoma City Burglar Gets A Surprise

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

From May 19, 2009 KFOR channel 4:
OKLAHOMA CITY -- One burglar may be considering a different profession after nearly losing his life during a break-in, last Wednesday.

Heather Fitzgerald says she was checking e-mail in her garage with the garage partially open. Shortly before 3:00 a.m., however, an intruder crawled in.

Heather immediately worried for her children, who were sleeping inside the home. She grabbed her 9-milimeter pistol and fired two shots at the man.

Police do not believe he was hit because they found no blood at the scene. As he was running away, she says she lined up the gun's laser sight on his back, but did not pull the trigger again, most likely sparing his life.

"I just, I couldn't do it," Fitzgerald says. "And it took everything that I had, not to. Seems like you should be able to be in your own garage at night when it's dark and not have to worry about that kind of stuff."

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

San Antonio Pharmacy Owner Shoots Robber

San Antonio, Texas

From the May 27, 2009 San Antonio Express-News:
An attempted robbery at a North Side pharmacy turned deadly Wednesday morning when the business owner pulled out a gun and shot the suspected robber.

No other injuries were reported at the incident that happened about 10 a.m. at Babcock Square Pharmacy, located at the intersection of Babcock and Huebner Roads.

Police Chief William McManus said the suspect handed an employee behind the counter a note that demanded the narcotic drug OxyContin. The chief said the employee was somehow able to alert the pharmacy's owner, who retrieved his gun and confronted the suspect.

“The suspect saw his gun, and said, ‘Let's get it on,'” McManus said.

The owner, who saw a cocked revolver in the suspect's hand, pointed his gun at the suspect and shot him point-blank, McManus said. Only the owner, his wife, an employee and the robbery suspect were inside the store at the time of the shooting, according to authorities.

The chief said no charges would be filed against the owner, who was not immediately identified.

“He was in fear of his life, so this appears to be justified,” McManus said.

Oklahoma City Homeowner Shoots Burglar

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

From the May 27, 2009 Oklahoma City Oklahoman:
Police identified a man fatally shot Tuesday inside an Oklahoma City man’s home as Ronald Penn, 29.

Penn and another person had broken into the house of Scott Henson, 41, in the 2200 block of SW 57 when Henson came home for his lunch break about 11:30 a.m., police said. Henson, whose wife said has a concealed weapons permit, pulled out a handgun and shot Penn to death.

The second person inside the home ran away, police said.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Pharmacist Defends Employees, Kills Robber

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

From the May 22, 2009 Oklahoma City Oklahoman:
Jerome Ersland was back at work Thursday filling prescriptions and hoping that by taking the life of a 16-year-old boy two days earlier, he had saved others.

Rubbing an oversized bandage on his left forearm, where he said he was grazed by a robber’s bullet, Ersland related details of what he said was a highly organized hit on the Reliable Discount Pharmacy.

"I just regret anybody would get killed,” Ersland said. "But if I wouldn’t have been here, there would have been three people killed — the other pharmacist and the two techs.”


After the pharmacy near SW 59 and Pennsylvania was robbed two years ago, the owner installed new security measures to try to make sure his employees would never again be forced to a back room and pistol-whipped.

"We have a very good security system,” Ersland said, motioning to the magnetic door locks that won’t let anyone in or out of the store without permission. "The door locks, and they (robbers) knew that. They had cased it because they knew exactly what time to hit us when we’d have all of our narcotics out and our money out.”

About 10 minutes before 6 p.m., Ersland said, two robbers wearing ski masks waited for someone to leave the pharmacy and then grabbed the open door and threw down a board to stop the door from closing.

The robbers went in cursing and yelling, ordering employees to give them money and drugs, Ersland said.

Two women who were working behind the counter ran for a back room where they would be safe, but Ersland said he couldn’t run. Ersland said he’s a veteran with disabilities from wounds he received in Operation Desert Storm, wears a cumbersome back brace and just had his latest back surgery six weeks ago.

"All of a sudden, they started shooting,” he said. "They were attempting to kill me, but they didn’t know I had a gun. They said, ‘You’re gonna die.’ That’s when one of them shot at me, and that’s when he got my hand.”

Ersland said he was thrown against a wall, but managed to go for the semiautomatic in his pocket.

"And that’s when I started defending myself,” he said. "The first shot got him in the head, and that slowed him down so I could get my other gun.”

But as one robber hit the floor, Ersland said, a bullet from the other robber whizzed past his ear.

The pharmacist said he then got his second gun from a nearby drawer, a Taurus "Judge.”

After he had the big gun, Ersland said, the second robber ran.

But as he started to chase after the second robber, Ersland said, he looked back to see the 16-year-old he had shot in the head getting up again. Ersland said he then emptied the Kel-Tec .380 into the boy’s chest as he kept going after the second robber.

"I went after the other guy, but he was real fast and I’m crippled,” Ersland said.

Outside the pharmacy, he said he saw what he thought was a third black male in a car with the engine running and reaching for what appeared to be a shotgun.

"I pulled out my ‘Judge’ and pointed it right between his eyes and he floored it,” Ersland said.

UPDATE: From the May 27, 2009 Oklahoma City Oklahoman:
The charge alleges Ersland shot Antwun Parker, 16, while he was incapacitated and lying on his back. Ersland’s account of the incident doesn’t match the video or the evidence collected at the scene, according to the affidavit written by Oklahoma City Police Detective David Jacobson.

Parker was shot once in the head and five times in the stomach area. The autopsy found Parker was still alive after the head shot and died from the stomach wounds.
The surveillance video does seem to confirm that while the first shot was in self-defense, subsequent shots were not even close to being in self-defense. Nonetheless, the initial use was lawful self-defense.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sacramento Teenager Protects His Mother

Sacramento County, California

From the May 21, 2009 Sacramento Bee:
A 17-year-old boy stands accused of killing a man Tuesday morning, though detectives now believe the shooting was justified, authorities said Wednesday.

Sacramento County sheriff's deputies arrested the boy, whose name has not been released because he is a juvenile, late Tuesday night on suspicion of murder, said sheriff's Sgt. Tim Curran.

Detectives made the arrest based on information they had gathered about the fatal shooting that morning of 30-year-old James Davis on the 2800 block of La Quinta Drive, Curran said.

But after interviewing the boy, Curran said, detectives learned that he had acted in self-defense – and in defense of his mother, Davis' girlfriend, who had been "beaten severely" before the fatal confrontation.

The boy was booked into juvenile hall on a murder charge but later released – though the murder charge still stands, Curran said. The Sacramento County District Attorney's Office is reviewing the case and will decide if it was justifiable homicide.

Deputies were called to La Quinta Drive, near Folsom Boulevard in south Sacramento about 5 a.m. after reports of gunshots and a woman screaming. They found Davis' body on the sidewalk, and paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene. The Sheriff's Department is not releasing the woman's name because she is not a suspect and is a victim of domestic violence.

Curran said the victim and his girlfriend had had a "violent fight," witnessed by the 17-year-old boy, who followed Davis outside and shot him, Curran said. ...

Davis had a history of domestic violence in Sacramento County, according to Superior Court records. Most recently, he pleaded no contest to misdemeanor domestic violence in September 2004 and was sentenced to 365 days in jail.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cross-Dressing Robber Shot By Liquor Store Owner

Macon, Georgia

From May 18, 2009 WMAZ channel 13:

A Central Georgia man is recovering from a gunshot wound; he got shot after robbing a Macon liquor store at gun point.

A news release from Sgt. Melanie Hofmann with the Macon Police says 50-year-old Ricky Nell Johnson robbed the ABC Liquor Store at 1194 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. on Saturday.

The release says Johnson entered the store around 6:45 p.m. wearing a wig and skirt. It says he showed a handgun, jumped on the counter and demanded money.

After getting some cash, Johnson fired a shot and ran out of the liquor store. The release says an employee returned fire.

According to the release, Johnson was found near a parking deck at the Medical Center. He was taken by ambulance to the emergency room, where doctors treated him for a gunshot wound to the torso near the buttocks.

From looking at the picture--I doubt anyone was fooled by the wig and skirt.

Monday, May 18, 2009

New Jersey Resident Shoots Intruder

Berkeley Heights, New Jersey

From the May 12, 2009 New Jersey Star-Ledger:

BERKELEY HEIGHTS -- A resident shot a man last night when the would-be intruder tried to enter a home in the Deserted Village of Feltville, authorities said.

The shooting in the secluded section of Watchung Reservation occurred around 9 p.m. on Cataract Hollow Road, Union County Police Chief Dan Vaniska said. He said the victim, whose name and address were not available, was taken to Morristown Memorial Hospital and was listed in stable condition.

"An unwanted guest forced himself into the residence and a resident responded by shooting him," Vaniska said at the scene.

Details were scant last night, but Vaniska said the home's residents were brought to county police headquarters, where they were being questioned.

It was not known where on the premises the shooting occurred, but a sedan parked near the porch of the two-story, wood-frame house had a shattered left rear window.

Cataract Hollow Road is part of the historic Deserted Village of Feltville. The site in Watchung Reservation was inhabited by small businesses, a mill and families on and off from 1845 to 1916. Visitors can stroll the village, which includes homes the county leases.

Sacramento Jewelry Store Owner Shoots Burglars

Sacramento, California

From the May 18, 2009 Sacramento Bee:

Sacramento County sheriff's detectives continue to investigate the fatal shooting this morning of a man they say was breaking into a coin and jewelry.

The suspect was killed by the owner of the store on the 4900 block of Marconi Avenue. The 65-year-old owner has not been arrested, a sheriff's spokesman said.

The district attorney will determine if any charges are filed against the owner, based on results of the sheriff's investigation.

The shop owner was inside the store when the incident began at about 4:15 a.m. Investigators are gathering evidence that will help determine if the shooting was justified.

Sheriff's Sgt. Tim Curran said two men approached the store, which had been the target of another break-in on April 29. This time, the owner was inside and called the sheriff's department to report two men in their mid-20s and wearing black ski masks trying to enter.

Curran said that as the owner spoke on the phone with department personnel, the person taking the call heard several gunshots.

"Then the business owner said one subject was down in the parking lot," Curran said.

Deputies arrived to find a body in the park

ing lot. Fire department emergency personnel pronounced the man dead at the scene.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Tampa Woman Drives Off Carjacker

Tampa, Florida

From May 15, 2009 Tampa ABC affiliate:
TAMPA, FL -- A Tampa woman refused to be a carjacking victim when she was approached by an armed man who jumped into her car on Thursday.

The woman, who only wants to be identified as Adrianna, pulled out her own gun. "I just leaned forward and punched him in the forehead with my gun," she said. The man "screamed like a girl and almost dropped his gun" as he ran away, she added.

Tampa Police have arrested one suspect so far in what they see as a pattern of carjackings. A-Keem Carr was arrested on related charges, but two others are believed to be preying on motorists in the Westshore area.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Texas: Armed citizen takes out tires as shoplifters flee

Azle, Texas

From the Azle News Online of May 9, 2009
Armed citizen takes out tires as shoplifters flee

A citizen with a “concealed-carry” handgun license shot out a tire on a car full of fleeing shoplifters, then followed them in his own vehicle Wednesday morning, helping Azle police apprehend four people who were subsequently charged with robbery.

Police officers from at least three agencies caught up with everyone in a neighborhood behind Allsup’s convenience store off Highway 199 west of Azle.

Four accused shoplifters had been spotted by employees of Albertsons grocery store and were attempting a getaway with less than $50 worth of miscellaneous items when they were spotted by a citizen in the parking lot. The citizen was carrying a properly licensed concealed weapon, Azle police chief Steve Myers said Wednesday afternoon.

The fleeing driver seemed to be headed straight for the citizen, who fired at the vehicle, striking a front tire.

Another citizen called 911 and reported “an undercover officer shooting at someone who tried to run him down,” Myers said.

That “undercover officer”, it was later discovered, was the armed citizen, Myers said. Both the caller and the “shooter” remained unidentified by police in the interest of their safety.

However, the man with the handgun got in a pickup and followed the suspect vehicle, which could no longer be driven by the time it arrived in the neighborhood, Myers said.

“I guess they thought they could turn off the highway and get lost out in the county,” he said.

However, that area is made up of just a few interconnected streets, with no other way out besides the highway, he said.

Arrested were Michael Reiser, 38, of San Angelo; Kyle Scott, 21 of Fort Worth; Jennifer Jeffrey, 35, of San Angelo; and Tami Mickey, 32, of Fort Worth.

Three of the four were apprehended at the vehicle by Azle police in the 400 block of Oakwood Street. Reiser, the driver, was caught by Azle officer Chris Negrete and a DPS trooper about 30 minutes later in the 1600 block of Willowwood Drive.

Both are off of Pearson Lane, north of the highway.

The four reportedly discarded the shoplifted items as they drove from the scene.

They will be charged with robbery, a felony, instead of shoplifting, a misdemeanor, because the car was used as a deadly weapon in their escape, Myers said.

Albertson’s is in Tarrant County, so charges will be filed with the Tarrant County District Attorney’s office even though the suspects were caught in Parker County. Azle police, Parker County Sheriff’s deputies and at least two Department of Public Safety troopers helped in the chase, Myers said.

The chief has mixed feelings about the help officers received from an armed citizen.

“Our concern in a situation like that is the number of people in the immediate vicinity of an individual who don’t have a way to know who or what he is,” Myers said.

“A uniformed officer is easily identifiable. But the public doesn’t know who (a citizen with a handgun) is, or how to help.”

On the other hand, this particular citizen did choose the most restrained use of his weapon, firing only at the tires of the vehicle and ultimately helping catch a car full of suspects.

Michigan: Detroit woman fires shots through window at would-be intruders

Detroit, Michigan

From the Detroit Free Press of May 13, 2009
Detroit woman fires shots through window at would-be intruders

A homeowner on the Detroit's east side thwarted three robbers by firing out of her bedroom as the men made their way up the steps inside her home, according to police.

A neighbor at 5 a.m. today noticed the three men breaking in the kitchen window of the home in the 900 block of Algonquin, according to Detroit Police.

He called the cell phone of the man who lives there, who was on his way home from work. The homeowner then called his wife, woke her and told her to get their gun.

Hearing footsteps on the stairs, she fired a number of shots, missing the thieves. The husband arrived home just as the men were climbing back out of the window, and they escaped.

Massachusetts: No charges in neighbor's death

Wilbraham, Massachusetts

From The Republican of May 9, 2009
No charges in neighbor's death

A Boston Road condominium owner who shot and killed a neighbor Thursday night at present faces no charges because the shooting appears to be in self defense, Police Chief Allen M. Stratton said Friday.

Stratton said the Woodcrest Condominium resident, whose name was not released, told police he shot twice at a man who came into his apartment without permission, refused to leave and then became aggressive. The shooting took place just before 8:30 p.m.

The intruder turned out to be the owner of a neighboring condominium unit. He was identified as David P. Gatti, 29, of unit C25, police said.

Gatti, a star football and lacrosse player more than a decade ago at Minnechaug Regional High School, sold insurance with his parent's agency in Springfield.

He was shot twice and pronounced dead at Baystate Medical Center, police said.

Friends of Gatti said Friday the account of the shooting simply does not jibe with the gentle, non-violent man they've known for years.

"He didn't have an aggressive bone in his body," said Samuel O'Neil of Springfield.

According to police reports, the condo resident was home sometime after 8 p.m. when he heard someone trying to enter the front door. He went to the door, opened it and saw Gatti, who stepped inside uninvited.

The resident told police he did not recognize him, and when asked to leave, Gatti refused and became "threatening in nature," police said.

Police Chief Stratton said Gatti did not have a weapon and never laid his hands on the condo owner. The owner described him as yelling and gesturing in such a way that he felt threatened.

The resident told police he retreated into the condo and armed himself, and when Gatti reportedly followed him, he opened fire, police said.

Stratton said the initial investigation so far indicates the "control, possession and use of the firearm was defensive in nature and consistent with Massachusetts General Laws."

Hampden County District Attorney William M. Bennett said his office will review the circumstances but it appears the shooting is justified within state law.


Florida: Police: St. Pete homeowner with shotgun confronts burglar

St. Petersberg, Florida

From Tampa Bay Online of May 11, 2009
Police: St. Pete homeowner with shotgun confronts burglar

A homeowner confronted a burglar this morning, smashing the intruder across the face with the butt end of a shotgun, St. Petersburg police said.

The burglar, identified by police as Justin Masse, 22, at first fled, then turned around and started toward homeowner Michael Lowry, a U.S. Navy veteran, police said. That's when Lowry fired a shell in the ground, and Masse ran off, police said.

A newspaper delivery person spotted Masse unconscious two blocks away in a front yard, police said. Masse received stitches and was eventually transported to the Pinellas County Jail on a charge of residential burglary, police said.

The attempted break-in occurred about 4 a.m. at Lowry's home, in the 5000 block of Second Avenue South, police said. Lowry spotted Masse in his detached garage and confronted Masse with the 12-gauge shotgun.

During a fight that followed, Masse was struck in the face with the butt of the weapon, apparently considered continuing the struggle and then ran off before falling unconscious, police said.

Texas: Local man reacts to an almost home invasion

Lubbock, Texas

From KCBD of May 13, 2009
Local man reacts to an almost home invasion

A local man wants your help finding two men who tried to break into his house, and he caught the almost home invasion on his web cam.

Many people would be frightened if they were at home and someone tried to break in, but Andy Hartman says he stayed calm because he had a weapon, and he knew the rules on when and how to use it. "I heard somebody knock on the door, and rang the doorbell. I thought it was just a salesman so I kind of ignored it," Hartman said.

Every day when he gets home from work Hartman puts his wallet, keys, phone and gun on the kitchen counter. He carries his gun with him where ever he goes, and last Wednesday, he almost had to use it in the comfort of his own home.

Hartman's home web cam taped someone kicking his back door repeatedly. In the video, you can see the shutters shake each time the person kicks. Hartman grabbed his phone, his gun and called 911. "I'm in my bedroom with a gun. They're breaking in my house," he said in the 911 call.

While waiting for police, Hartman stayed in a back room and listened as the intruder kicked his door more than 20 times. "The officers will want you to put the gun up once they're there, but it's okay obviously for you to have it while they're still breaking in," the 911 operator told him.

Hartman says he was able to stay calm because he knew exactly what to do. He took a concealed handgun class in January. "You know when you can and cannot use the gun, and when it's time to use it you know how to use it," he said.

The woman who led the class Andy took, Gay Lynn Stone, says, "The rules of deadly force for the state of Texas, it just simply says if your life is threatened or the life of another person is threatened then y ou have the right to protect you or that person."

Stone says because Texas' handgun laws are written loosely, he probably could legally shoot the intruder even before they entered the house, but she thinks Hartman made the right decision in waiting for the police. "He did exactly what he was supposed to do, and he treated it as if the use of deadly force would be the last resort," she said.

Police arrived in less than three minutes, but the suspects got away. Probably better for him than if he had made his way into the house. When asked if he would have shot the intruder Hartman said, "Absolutely. No question in my mind."

The police still have not caught the suspects, but Hartman believes two Hispanic males in their early 20s driving a gray Dodge Neon were involved.

Florida: Deputies: Armed homeowner stops burglary

Ocala, Florida

From the Star-Banner of April 30, 2009
Deputies: Armed homeowner stops burglary

Sheriff’s deputies say a 25-year-old Summerfield man accused of burglarizing a home didn’t get very far, as the homeowner retrieved his .45-caliber handgun and held the man at gunpoint until they arrived.

Calvin Crews told deputies on Wednesday he was at his residence in the 10000 block of Southeast 108th Terrace Road when he heard someone calling his name. Crews said he looked outside and saw 25-year-old James Lazarus Wayne Day running toward a truck, according to a Marion County Sheriff’s Office report.

Crews said he got his gun and returned to the window. He said Day drove the truck up to the front porch, ran inside the home, went to a bedroom and removed a five-gallon jug that was filled with about $600 in change.

Crews then held the man at gunpoint and called deputies, according to the report. When they arrived, Crews came out of the home with his gun and told authorities what had happened.

Entering the home, deputies found Day kneeling on the floor next to the five-gallon jug of change. Day told them he went to Crews’ home to ask for a job. He said he had just stuck his head in the door when Crews pulled a gun on him.

Officials said Day used to work for Crews.

Day was then arrested and taken to the Marion County Jail where he was charged with residential burglary and grand theft.

Austin Home Invader Shot

Austin, Texas

From May 8, 2009 Austin channel 8:

An East Austin man got a rude awakening early Monday morning about 5 a.m.

Police were called to an apartment at East 11th Street and Chicon on reports a man had been shot.

The victim was taken to Brackenridge Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Police are investigating the incident as a home invasion.

Columbia, Missouri Burglar Shot

Columbia, Missouri

From the April 30, 2009 Missourian:

COLUMBIA — A woman whose house was being burglarized is believed to have shot one of the three men caught in her home early Thursday.

The woman arrived at her home in northeast Columbia and found that her back door had been kicked open, according to a release from the Columbia Police Department. Inside, she found three men robbing her house.

She left the house, and the men followed her. She told police that one of the men had a handgun and pointed it at her. She fired one round at the men, the release stated.

Investigators collected evidence that led them to believe that one suspect was shot. Though local hospitals were notified, there were no suspects at the time of the news release.

Los Angeles Car Burglar Shot In Face

Los Angeles, California

From the May 3, 2009 Los Angeles Times:

A man suspected of burglarizing cars in the Mar Vista area was shot in the face by a resident early this morning, police said.

The man was breaking into vehicles when he was confronted by a resident at about 1:40 a.m., said Los Angeles Police Sgt. Dennis Beacham.

"He was subsequently shot and sustained a gunshot wound to the facial area," Beacham said. "It’s my understanding he’s in stable condition."

Police did not release the name or age of the victim, and would not say whether the resident who shot him was arrested.

Updated: 5:33 p.m. Two young men accompanying the suspected burglar fled before police arrived, Los Angeles Police Officer Rosario Herrera said. The shooting occurred in the 3800 block of Beethoven Street, and the gunshot victim was taken to a local hospital where he was in stable condition, Herrera said. “The shooter wasn’t arrested, it was in self-defense,” Herrera said.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Hit And Run Driver Apprehended At Gunpoint

South Bend, Indiana

From the May 8, 2009 South Bend Tribune:
MISHAWAKA — Two young girls, sisters, were in critical condition late Thursday after being run down earlier in the evening while crossing the street arm-in-arm after playing with friends.

The driver reportedly attempted to flee, but was stopped at gunpoint by a man who witnessed the accident.

According to witnesses, the two girls, ages 4 and 6, were crossing 11th Street at Dodge Street about 7:18 p.m. when a man traveling west on 11th in a blue Chevrolet Lumina struck both of them at about 40 mph.

"No sooner had they crossed the street than I heard tires lock up and, 'Boom! Boom!,'æ" said Alan Knepp, who was standing just up the street when the girls were hit.

Knepp said the younger girl passed quickly beneath the vehicle, but her older sister rode the hood for several seconds before falling beneath the front end and then under both driver's side tires.

The girls behind him, the driver then hit the gas, witnesses said, but stopped when Knepp, who was legally carrying a gun, jumped in front of the vehicle and trained his weapon on it.

Approached by Knepp, the driver reportedly said the girls had jumped out in front of him. He then handed his keys to Knepp and stood silently next to his vehicle until police arrived.

The girls, meanwhile, lay nearly lifeless in the road, witnesses said. The younger one initially was not breathing, and the older one's limbs and neck were badly twisted.

Fetched by a neighbor, the girls' mother arrived moments later and reportedly passed out at the sight of her daughters' motionless bodies.

Both girls were rushed by ambulance to Memorial Hospital in South Bend with critical injuries, Mishawaka police Capt. Pasquale Rulli said. One was immediately admitted into surgery, he said, and the other flown to Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Anchorage, Alaska Man Pulls Gun On Harrassing Teens

Anchorage, Alaska

From the May 7, 2009 Anchorage Daily News:
A report of a man pointing a gun at some teenagers on bikes at the Sears mall spurred an extensive police response and prompted school district officials to lock the doors at Fairview Elementary School Thursday afternoon.

But it turned out the young adults had in fact been harassing the man and that he pulled a weapon from his vehicle for protection, police Lt. Dave Parker said.

The two parties split after the incident at about 1:45 p.m., but witnesses followed the man with the gun north on the Seward Highway to 13th Avenue and Gambell Street, where police with guns drawn stopped the man and a passenger.

Seeing that activity, the principal of the Fairview school locked the doors, school district spokeswoman Heidi Embley said. It was the only school to take any action and reopened a short time later, she said.

After questioning the suspect and other witnesses -- the youths could not be located -- police determined the unnamed man had acted within his rights because he had not pointed the weapon at anyone and had not brandished it in a menacing manner, Parker said.

Racine, Wisconsin Bicyclists Defends Himself From Robbers

Racine, Wisconsin

From the May 6, 2009 Racine County Journal Times:
RACINE — Four teens knocked a 42-year-old Racine man from his bike Friday night. He thought they were going to rob him.

The man pulled a Smith and Wesson revolver from his side holster, pointed it at the sky and yelled, “Gun!”

The four suspects ran, and the man flagged down a Racine police officer.

The incident will perhaps mark the first time a new opinion allowing open carry of firearms is put to the test here, as it conflicts with another state statute that makes it illegal to possess a gun within 1,000 feet of a school, if not on private property.

The Racine man involved, who asked not to be named and declined to comment on the alleged robbery attempt when contacted by The Journal Times, was assaulted in the 1100 block of Grand Avenue, which is within 1,000 feet of Walden School, 1012 Center St.

Police did not arrest the man. After he was treated for head and wrist injuries at the scene by Racine rescue, officers escorted the man home and returned his gun to him.

But that doesn’t mean charges won’t be filed against the man, and police are questioning how such situations should be handled in the future.

“It’s difficult with the way the laws are written to carry (a gun) and not get into trouble,” said police spokesman Lt. Jim Dobbs.

He said the new open carry ruling will probably prompt more and more people to wear firearms, but in many places in the city, even stepping off their front porch would mean they are breaking the law.

“People will break the law inadvertently,” Dobbs said. “We want clarification from the state on what we should be doing.”

Last month, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen sent out a memo saying openly wearing a holstered gun is not illegal. While Wisconsin law states a person cannot legally carry a concealed weapon, it does not address carrying a firearm in plain sight.

The opinion has created many questions, now including the apparent conflict between the existing statute over possessing a firearm near a school.
UPDATE: From the May 15, 2009 Racine Journal Times:
RACINE — The armed bicyclist who scared off a group of teens he believed were trying to rob him earlier this month will not be charged, the Racine County District Attorney’s Office said Friday.

In a letter to the 42-year-old Racine man, who has asked not to be identified, District Attorney Mike Nieskes wrote, “After speaking with the investigating officer on this matter, I have decided it would not be in the greater interest of justice in the community to charge you with violation of Wisconsin Statute regarding gun free zones.”

According to police reports, the man was riding his bicycle in the 1100 block of Grand Avenue on May 1 when he was knocked from his bicycle by four teens. The man told police he thought the group was trying to rob him, so he pulled out the revolver he was openly carrying in a side holster. Reports said he pointed the gun at the sky and yelled, “Gun!”

The group of teens fled and the man flagged down a Racine police officer. During the assault, the man suffered a wrist injury. He was treated at the scene by Racine rescue.

Police did not arrest the man. They escorted him home and returned his gun to him.

However, the incident raised questions from law enforcement because the man was armed within a 1,000 feet of a school, which is illegal under state statute. The current law conflicts with a recent opinion by the state Attorney General’s Office which said it is legal to openly carry a firearm.

In his letter, Nieskes said the decision not to charge the man was based on the recent determination of the attorney general, along with the man’s lack of prior criminal record and no showing of irresponsible use of the firearm. “I don’t believe it would be appropriate to charge you,” Nieskes wrote. “I will presume that you understand that despite the announcement by the Attorney General for the State of Wisconsin regarding open carry, that you and all other individuals, a notable exception being on-duty police officers, are barred from possessing a firearm in certain circumstances and place.”

Schriever, Louisiana Burglar Shot To Death

Schriever, Louisiana

From the May 7, 2009 Houma (La.) Today:
HOUMA — An armed burglary that ended with a homeowner’s brother fatally shooting a suspect was preceded by a rash of similar crimes in the area, deputies said.


About 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, two brothers who live in the 400 block of West Main Street discovered a pair of men — one of whom was armed with a BB gun — who had broken into one of the men’s garage.

The homeowner, Chris Derocher, and his brother, Bryan Derocher, live on the same property in separate homes.

Bryan Derocher called his sibling that evening when he saw two men walking around the property, deputies said.

When Chris Derocher, who was away from home, arrived, he noticed his garage window was damaged and a motion-sensor light inside the garage was turned on, deputies said.

Chris Derocher and his brother, who was armed with a handgun, opened the garage door and found the two men inside, deputies said.

One of the suspects, Terry Hayes, 34, brandished the BB gun at the men, and Bryan Derocher fired two shots, one of which struck Hayes in the torso.

Hayes died at the scene, deputies said.

Hidalgo said Hayes’ BB gun was indistinguishable from an actual gun.

The other burglary suspect, Charles Mouton, 42, of Thibodaux, was held at gunpoint by Bryan Derocher until deputies arrived.

Hayes had previously been arrested for armed robbery, theft, burglary, illegal possession of stolen goods and illegal carrying of a firearm, among other charges, deputies said.

Mouton had similar arrest history.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Corryton, Tennessee Man Exchanges Gunfire With Home Invaders

Corryton, Tennessee

From the May 3, 2009 Knoxville News:

KNOXVILLE -- A Corryton man who was shot during a Saturday night robbery at his home is in “very critical condition” at the University of Tennessee Medical Center, a Knox County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said today.

Billy Graves, 42, was shot in the abdomen during an exchange of gunfire with two masked robbers who burst into the home he shares with his wife at 9920 Washington Pike just after 9 p.m., said Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Martha Dooley. His wife, 47-year-old Vickie Graves, wasn’t injured.

Authorities don’t know if either of the robbers was hit, and authorities don’t have detailed descriptions of either male suspect because they wore bandanas over their faces, she said.

A safe that was stolen during the robbery was later found near the couple’s home with the contents missing, she said.

Home Invader Shot With Own Gun In Anchorage

Anchorage, Alaska

From the May 4, 2009 Fairbanks News-Miner:

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Two people were shot Monday during an Anchorage home invasion and police said one of the robbery suspects may also have been wounded.

The homeowner, Tupo Santini, ran outside for help during the robbery. He managed to wrestle a gun away from one of the assailants and fire at him before all three fled, police said.

One man who may have been involved showed up at a hospital with a gunshot wound to his stomach but the other two were at large Monday morning, said police spokesman Lt. Dave Parker.

"We do not know who they are yet," Parker said.

Just after midnight, three armed men wearing dark "hoodies" broke into a mobile home in south Anchorage, intending to rob the home, police said.

Santini was at home with his five children. Police said his girlfriend, Christina Dau, had left to go to a store but his brother, Lofia Santini, and his girlfriend, Amy Itta, were visiting.

The men demanded money and one struck Tupo Santini on the head with a pistol. Santini suffered a cut to his head and the gun fired.

Lofia Santini began struggling with a suspect and Itta tried to crawl down a hallway.

Lofia Santini was shot twice in the chest and Itta was shot in the back. Police said their injuries were serious.

No children were injured.

Tupo Santini ran to get help and was chased outside by a gunman. Santini managed to wrestle the gun from the assailant and fire at him. The assailants then left.

Washington: Pistol-packing pharmacist scares away robbers

Seattle, Washington

From of May 5, 2009
Pistol-packing pharmacist scares away robbers

A small sign in the Bob Johnson Pharmacy window says it all: Mike Donahue does not put up with anyone trying to steal from him.

The sign lists a half-dozen people who Donahue says have tried to rob the Crown Hill pharmacy since 1988. “None of them got away with it!” the sign reads. Donahue has security cameras set up, a security system and, as he tells KING 5, he’s armed with a Glock 19 handgun under his lab coat.

This is surveillance video of Donahue chasing a would-be robber out the front door. “When someone comes in to rob my pharmacy or put my patients at risk I have something to help protect us,” he says. He’s pulled the gun on three potential thieves, most recently a few months ago.

Bob Johnson Pharmacy isn’t the only business in the area around 85th St. and 14th Ave. that’s been the target of recent crime. Crown Hill Methodist church was broken into early in the morning on Palm Sunday, and just last week, someone broke into Wild Mountain Cafe.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Texas: Grand jury: city homicide justifiable

Weatherford, Texas

From the Weatherford Democrat of April 29, 2009
Grand jury: city homicide justifiable

The Weatherford home owner who shot and killed an intruder in March will not face criminal charges, a Parker County Grand Jury recently determined.

After hearing a full offense report, which included witness statements and evidence, jurors declined to indict the elderly shooter.

Weatherford police presented the case April 16. The homicide, which occurred in the 500 block of South Rusk Street, occurred shortly after 1 a.m. on March 4.

On the morning of the incident, Robert Earl Bardwell, 57, of Weatherford, was shot multiple times after police say he forced entry into a residence and started assaulting the elderly owner’s 34-year-old son.

The home owner, identified as a 66-year-old white male, reportedly attempted to warn Bardwell by firing one shot from an automatic pistol into the ceiling. However, when the assailant failed to heed the warning and continued to assault his son, police say the father shot the intruder several times, fatally wounding him.

According to police, Bardwell was estranged from a relationship with a female subject in the home at the time of the incident.

Following the incident, police declined to identify the shooter and his son because neither man was arrested.

Columbus Gas Station Robber Shot

Columbus, Ohio

From May 5, 2009 WBNS channel 10, Columbus:
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Police said a man was shot when he tried to rob a northeast side gas station on Tuesday morning.

The armed robber entered the BP gas station, located at 1959 17th Ave., shortly after midnight, 10TV's Tino Ramos reported.

The man confronted the clerk, who had a gun behind the counter. The clerk shot the robber and he collapsed outside.

Arkansas: 'Case cleared' in shooting of dazed intruder

Conway, Arkansas

From the Log Cabin Democrat of April 24, 2009
'Case cleared' in shooting of dazed intruder

There will be no charges against any involved in an April 11 incident that resulted in a 20-year-old Conway man being shot in the leg after intruding into a home.

Paul Willey told a Conway Police Department detective Brian Williams that he had been awake for several days and had entered "a hypnotized state."

Willey said this hypnotic trance "is why he was walking on cars and swinging through trees," Williams wrote in a supplementary report released Thursday.

In his apparently dazed state Willey entered a Baxter Drive residence believing that a friend lived there and jumped out of a second-floor window when confronted by a homeowner armed with a Walther PPK .380 caliber handgun.

This homeowner told Williams that he fired two shots "into the ground in an effort to get the suspect to stop" as Willey fled through a neighbor's yard. He said he wasn't aware that one of the bullets had hit Willey in the leg, causing what is described in the report as a "through and through" injury that bled very little. Willey was treated and released by Conway Regional Medical Center that day.

The families of Willey and the homeowner who shot him have "all decided not to pursue charges (against) each other," Williams wrote, and 20th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Marcus Vaden has "advised that he will not file charges per the victims' request."

"No further action taken, the case will be exceptionally cleared," the report concludes.

Utah: Police: Resident shoots, kills intruder in Midvale apartment break-in

Midvale, Utah

From the Salt Lake City Tribune of May 5, 2009
Police: Resident shoots, kills intruder in Midvale apartment break-in

Police say they are looking for as many as eight or nine assailants after a home invasion early Tuesday at a Midvale apartment that ended when one of the residents shot and killed a suspect.

Midvale police believe a female assailant was also shot, leaving a trail of blood outside the Springs of the Country Woods apartment complex at 1039 E. Watercress.

Four people, including two sisters, ages 14 and 22, were inside a third-floor apartment at the complex at about 1:30 a.m. when someone knocked at the door, Midvale police Sgt. John Salazar said.

When the 26-year-old uncle of the sisters opened the door, a group of up to 10 tried to force their way inside. In a struggle at the door, one assailant stabbed the uncle in the hand, Salazar said.

As the struggle continued inside, one assailant hit the 22-year-old woman, angering her 23-year-old boyfriend. He fought with another assailant, got hold of the man's gun and fired about four shots inside, and possibly three outside, Salazar said.

Three of the shots inside struck a 31-year-old suspect, who died at the scene. He was armed with two knives and a handgun, Salazar said.

Everyone else scattered in different directions, and the lone woman in the group appeared to have been shot outside, witnesses told police.

"I'm amazed that no one else was hurt," Salazar said, noting that the bullets fired inside did not go through walls into neighboring apartments.

Police found a sawed-off, 12-guage shotgun and a 40-caliber handgun on the roof of a parking structure nearby. They forced their way into a neighboring garage, but did not find anyone hiding there.

The uncle was hospitalized for his knife wound, and will be OK, Salazar said. Investigators, who were wrapping up their work at the scene by about 10:30 a.m., don't yet have a motive for the home invasion.

Tennessee: Man shot in self-defense, police say

Hamilton County, Tennessee

From the Chattanooga Times Free Press of April 12, 2009
Man shot in self-defense, police say

The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office was called to 1211 Lakeside Drive at about 9 p.m. Saturday on reports of a shooting, spokeswoman Janice Atkinson said.

On arrival deputies found the victim, Kevin Bailiff, 22, lying on the ground at the edge of the driveway to the residence, suffering from a gunshot wound to the left lower leg, Ms. Atkinson said.

Deputies secured the scene and detained the father of the victim, Richard Bailiff, 66, Ms. Atkinson said.

Detective Ed Merritt advised that father and son became involved in a verbal argument that escalated to the shooting and at this time appears to be self-defense, Ms. Atkinson said.

The victim was transported to Erlanger hospital by Hamilton County EMS.

The investigation is continuing, Ms. Atkinson said.

Monday, May 4, 2009

College Park, Georgia Home Invader Shot To Death

College Park, Georgia

From the May 3, 2009 Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

College Park police are investigating a home invasion at a College Park apartment early Sunday in which a victim shot and killed one of the robbers.

Police said two men forced their way into a unit of the Southern Lakes apartments on Lakemont Drive about 2:54 a.m. There were 10 people in the apartment, police said.

After robbing them, the men and women were moved to different areas. One of the men has a gun and fought the robbers, shooting one of them, police said.

The robber was found dead outside the complex, police said, and his accomplice had fled. Their names were not released by police.

From May 4, 2009 WSB-TV channel 2:
Bailey said he thought it was the end of his life and the lives of the 10 people inside his apartment for a birthday party after two masked men with guns burst in through a patio door.

“They just came in and separated the men from the women and said, ‘Give me your wallets and cell phones,’” said George Williams of the College Park Police Department.

Bailey said the gunmen started counting bullets. “The other guy asked how many (bullets) he had. He said he had enough,” said Bailey.

That’s when one student grabbed a gun out of a backpack and shot at the invader who was watching the men. The gunman ran out of the apartment.

The student then ran to the room where the second gunman, identified by police as 23-year-old Calvin Lavant, was holding the women.

“Apparently the guy was getting ready to rape his girlfriend. So he told the girls to get down and he started shooting. The guy jumped out of the window,” said Bailey.

A neighbor heard the shots and heard someone running nearby.

“And I heard someone say, ‘Someone help me. Call the police. Somebody call the police,’” said a neighbor.

The neighbor said she believes it was Lavant, who was found dead near his apartment, only one building away.

Bailey said he is just thankful one student risked his life to keep others alive.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Pittsburgh Robber Shot

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

From April 25, 2009 WTAE channel 4, Pittsburgh:
An alleged robber was shot inside a Northside bar Friday night, emergency dispatchers said.

Emergency dispatchers said a man was shot in the chest while attempting to rob the Cantina Lounge in the 2600 block of California Avenue.

Olney, Pennsylvania Robber Shot By Victim

Olney, Pennsylvania

From April 16, 2009 WPVI channel 6, Philadelphia:

An 18-year-old man is hospitalized after being shot in Olney by a man he allegedly tried to rob.

It happened around 9:00 p.m. Thursday night at 3rd Street and Roosevelt Boulevard.

Police say the 18-year-old was found shot in the leg.

He was taken to Einstein Hospital.

His injuries are said to be nonlife threatening.

According to authorities, the 18-year-old was allegedly trying to rob the man who would eventually shoot him.

Home Invader Shot Dead in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, Texas

From the April 30, 2009 Forth Worth Star-Telegram:

FORT WORTH — An 18-year-old Fort Worth man killed Tuesday afternoon inside a north Fort Worth apartment had apparently forced his way inside, armed with an aluminum bat, when he was shot by one of the apartment’s residents, investigators said.

Derek Splawn, a student in the Keller school district, had been upset with the apartment’s 18-year-old resident and had reportedly threatened in an earlier telephone conversation "that he was tired of this and he was going to come over there," homicide Detective Curt Brannan said.

Around 4 p.m. Tuesday, police said, Splawn made good on his word and had a friend drive him to the Watercolor apartments in the 8600 block of Spring Tree Lane, near Beach Street and North Tarrant Parkway. As the friend waited in the car, Brannan said, Splawn first pounded on the apartment’s patio door, shouting for the 18-year-old resident to come out, before beating on the apartment’s front door.

Though the resident did not emerge, Brannan said, Splawn was able to force his way inside the apartment after the resident’s roommate opened the front door to peek out and saw Splawn standing there with the bat.

"Before he could get the door shut, the man [Splawn] pushed the door open and had taken several steps inside the doorway in the direction of the [18-year-old]," Brannan said.

Brannan said the 18-year-old, in turn, picked up a shotgun he kept in the home and fired once, striking Splawn in the face.