Archive for August, 2004

August 29, 2004

Orange Park, Florida

From Jacksonville’s of August 28, 2004

1 killed as robbery goes bad

Home invasion suspects encounter card players with guns in hand, too

Three armed men burst into an Orange Park-area home late Wednesday, pointing guns at four men who were playing cards inside.

Several of the card-players responded with gunfire, killing one of the intruders and prompting the two others and a possible accomplice waiting outside to flee, said Clay County Sheriff Scott Lancaster.

Two of the men who may have been responsible for what was apparently a home invasion robbery gone awry were quickly identified after a witness who noticed a “suspicious vehicle” in the neighborhood at the time jotted down its license tag and notified the sheriff’s office, Lancaster said.

“We’re always talking about partnerships with our community and these partnerships can solve crimes,” Lancaster said. “Even before we had begun processing the scene, we got a call from a witness … and within an hour we had two suspects.”

Those two suspects were arrested and charged with attempted home invasion robbery and felony murder. They were being processed into the Clay County Jail early Thursday afternoon and their names had not been released. The third suspect, the possible accomplice who did not enter the house, was still at large.

The name of the intruder who was killed was being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

The names of the people in the house also had not been released. Lancaster said his office and the State Attorney’s Office determined they acted in self-defense and would not be charged with the shooting.


August 28, 2004

Muncie, Indiana

From the Munster Northwest Indiana Times of August 28, 2004

Robbery suspects were in no hurry to help wounded comrade

Four would-be bandits drove nearly 90 minutes before they decided to get help for one of them who had been shot in the stomach when their robbery attempt turned into a shoot-out, police said Thursday.

And when they did get help, the other three wouldn’t go to the hospital.

Instead, fearing they would be caught by the police, the men, all from the Chicago area, dropped their accomplice off with a friend in Johnson County.

The injured would-be bandit, identified by police as 20-year-old Dustin Fredericksen of Lowell, Ind., was being treated late Thursday at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis.

Fredericksen was shot when he and three other men, two of whom are now in custody, walked into Prairie Creek Pawn Shop wearing masks. Before anyone exchanged a word, Fredericksen held a revolver to a potato as if it was a silencer and fired it at the head of owner Adam Kennedy who immediately drew his own gun and fired back, according to witnesses and police.

In all, at least four shots were fired within 10 seconds as Kennedy and three of the men stood about 10 feet from each other.

Investigators said Thursday they believe that the four men planned to shoot Kennedy and then rob him.

“They were going to shoot him right off the bat,” Muncie Police Sgt. Al Williams said. “It was by the grace of God [Kennedy] didn’t get shot.”

Since the robbery, Kennedy has reopened his pawn shop, although it was closed for nearly a day while he cleaned up pieces of the potato splattered throughout the store when Fredericksen tried unsuccessfully to use it as a silencer.

The owner said he plans to install some “security devices” to protect him in the future.

As for the gun. It’s still going to be at his side.

“If I didn’t have my gun, I wouldn’t be talking right now,” he said. “I always wondered what I would do in that situation. Now I know.”

August 26, 2004

Hardeeville, South Carolina

From the Beaufort Gazette of August 25, 2004

Police: Man killed breaking into home

A Hardeeville man shot and killed an intruder who broke into home early Monday morning, Jasper County Sheriff’s officials said.

Michael Jenkins, 32, of Hardeeville, was shot in the leg and face by Michael Grant, 28, when he broke down Grant’s door at 12:41 a.m., according to police.

Maj. Sam Woodward of the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office said Grant shot the intruder with a 9 mm semi-automatic pistol moments after his home security alarm went off.

“The suspect tried to enter the house using a crowbar and kicking in the door,” Woodward said. “When he kicked the door in, the homeowner fired shots.”

Jenkins was taken to Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah, where he was pronounced dead at approximately 4:30 a.m., Woodward said.

Grant, who lives alone, was questioned by police, but was not charged in the incident, Woodward said. The Solicitor’s Office will make the final call on whether charges are warranted, he said.

Woodward said the case is under investigation, and that police believe there was another suspect with Jenkins before he was shot. No one was in custody as of Monday evening.

South Carolina laws regarding the use of lethal force by a victim in a home invasion are less strict than in other states, said Prof. Kenneth Gaines, a criminal law professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law.

“A lot of states say there has to be a gun or other serious weapons involved before you can use deadly force,” Gaines said, adding that Grant will most likely not be charged in the shooting. “If (Jenkins) was in the house, I would doubt there will be any prosecution. In South Carolina, if somebody is breaking into your home, you can assume they are coming in to do something to you, and you are allowed to use deadly force.”

August 26, 2004

Sunset Hills, Missouri

From the August 25, 2004 St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

A homeowner in Sunset Hills fatally shot an intruder who pushed his way into the house and used a “stun gun,” police said. It happened about 6 a.m. Wednesday in the 12600 block of Old Gravois Road, at a relatively-isolated house surrounded by trees.

Police said the owner retrieved a small-caliber handgun before answering a knock on his back door. A man standing outside asked for gasoline and then forced his way in, shocking the resident with an electric stun gun, investigators were told. The owner fired one shot into the chest of the intruder, who turned and ran about 200 yards before falling dead.

Sunset Hills police said it appeared to be a justified use of a firearm in self defense. They said there was no apparent connection between the men, and surmised that the intruder had picked the house at random for a robbery. Nobody else was seriously hurt. The homeowner’s name was not released.

August 25, 2004

Gainesville, Florida

From Orlando’s of July 12, 2004

Woman Claims Self-Defense In Man’s Death

A Gainesville woman who killed her boyfriend over the weekend said it was a case of self-defense.

No charges have been filed against Shannon Cherise Allen. She said Willie Love Alston threatened her with a knife before she shot him at their home early Sunday. Alston died at a hospital Sunday afternoon.

Investigators talked to Allen for several hours before deciding not to file any charges. The case is being turned over to the State Attorney’s office, so charges are still possible after further review.

No subsequent stories about this incident were found.

August 24, 2004

Montgomery, Alabama

From the Montgomery Advertiser of August 24, 2004

No charges in shooting deaths

The district attorney calls it self-defense and the Autauga County grand jury ruled no crime occurred, but the mother of a man killed Dec. 11, 2002, at a Prattville drug house calls it murder.

The grand jury didn’t return any indictments in the case in which Marcus DaWayne Seago, 46, of Prattville and Irving Jackson, 29, of Montgomery were killed.

The grand jury wrapped up deliberations last Thursday and released its report Monday. District Attorney Randall Houston said the men were there to rob the place of money and drugs. No arrests had been made before the grand jury took up the case.

“We feel there was illegal activities going on in the home; drug-related activities,” Houston said. “But the people at the home have the right to defend themselves. Marcus Seago and Irving Jackson went there to rob the place, and they got killed for their trouble.”


August 23, 2004

Chesapeake, Virginia

From Norfolk’s of August 23, 2004

Chesapeake Police Seek Three Suspects After Shots Exchanged With Homeowner

Chesapeake police are looking for three suspects after they say a homeowner exchanged gunfire with the three early Monday morning.

According to officials, a man in the 1700 block of Cedar Road heard his dog barking in his Deep Creek backyard just before 4:00am.

When he went to investigate, police say he found three individuals that appeared to be stealing equipment from his neighbor’s truck.

The man – who police have not identified – says when he confronted the three, they fired gunshots towards him. He then returned fire with his own gun.

No one was hurt.

Police say they are looking for three black males driving a black Ford Explorer.

The trio could be charged with attempted malicious wounding.

August 22, 2004

Las Vegas, Nevada

From Las Vegas’ of August 20, 2004

Homeowner Kills Intruder Neighbor

It was a strange day on the city’s southeast side Friday. A man shot and killed his neighbor after the neighbor broke into his home. It all happened around 2 a.m. near Hacienda and Pecos.

Sgt. Mike Thompson, with Metro Homicide, said, “It was a struggle — blows between the suspect and victim.”

The incident was the result of a bizarre home invasion leaving one man dead and one family traumatized. “About 1:30 this morning, both residents heard a loud crash. The homeowner armed himself with a pistol,” Sgt. Thompson continued.

What’s unusual was that the intruder and the victims were backyard neighbors. The strange chain of events started when the intruder — identified by friends as George Morrelli — started banging on a neighbor’s door and then broke into his backyard neighbor’s home.

But the homeowner there was armed and ready. Sgt. Thompson said, “He met the intruder and got involved with the intruder. He discharged his weapon.”

Sgt. Thompson said, “He appears to have some type of mental illness. He apparently exhibited some strange behavior over the last few months.”

The man’s bizarre behavior included smashing his own satelite dish and shooting his own TV set. No one knows what made George Morrelli snap. But neighbors say he was heavily medicated and had difficulty coping with his Vietnam War experience.

It is unlikely the homeowner will face criminal charges since police say he was defending his life, his family and his home.

August 20, 2004

Palmer, Massachusetts

From the August 18, 2004 Boston Herald:

As Al Jurkowski tells it, the 300-pound black bear had murder in his eyes when he ambled out of the night and onto his front porch.

The bear had already terrorized the Palmer farmhouse twice, taking a swipe at Jurkowski’s Chihuahuas and downing a bag of birdseed. At 9 p.m. Sunday, the bear returned, this time getting so close Jurkowski said he could feel its breath.

“The thing was right in my face and I let him have it four times with my Ithica (shotgun),” he said. “I’m not a vengeful person, but I had to do something.”

The bear, a 3- to 5-year-old male, died on Jurkowski’s lawn as his wife prayed in a locked bedroom. Environmental police said the shooting was justified given the bear’s proximity to the house.

Jurkowski, a 56-year-old carpenter, said the bear had been stalking his family for a week. The first encounter happened Aug. 8, when the bear reached through a window and took a swipe at one of Jurkowski’s three dogs.

He returned again about 8 p.m. Sunday while Jurkowski and his wife, Marjorie, were watching the Olympics. “He was standing on the porch with his paws up as high as he could stretch and he had a 100-pound bag of sunflower seeds in his mouth,” Jurkowski said.

Jurkowski rushed inside and told his wife to call 911. Palmer police arrived minutes later and chased the bear into the woods with flashlights and sirens. The cops told the Jurkowskis not to worry; the bear would probably be too scared to return.

But less than an hour later, Jurkowski saw the hulking animal heading for his doorway, which was guarded only by a flimsy screen and his three yapping Chihuahuas.

“He was 5 feet away when I fired my first shot,” Jurkowski said. “I shot three more times and then my gun jammed. He gave a humongous roar, and I ran into the house.”

August 19, 2004

Aurora, Colorado

From the Aurora Daily Sun & Sentinel of August 10, 2004

Officials: No charges in Sunday shooting

Colorado’s Make My Day Law will likely keep an Aurora man from facing charges after he shot a gun-toting intruder in the face Sunday morning, police said.

Police said the a 19-year-old man and another 20-year-old man were surprised about 10:30 a.m. Aug. 8 when two armed men barged into the house at 805 Oakland St.

One of residents got a gun and a gunfight erupted inside the house. At one point, one of the intruders was shot in the face, and the two intruders fled.

The injured man later turned up at an area hospital for treatment and was arrested. He was later identified as 21-year-old Johnathon Vann. Police said neither Aurora man were injured. The other suspect was not identified and remains at large.

Charges are not expected to be filed against the resident of the house because he is protected under Colorado’s Make My Day Law, police said.

The Make My Day Law allows residents to use “justifiable use of force” against intruders into their homes as long as residents have reason to believe that an intruder may commit a crime other than the illegal entry and have a legitimate belief that the intruder will physically harm them.