Archive for March, 2006

March 31, 2006

Londonderry, New Hampshire

From the North Andover (MA) Eagle-Tribune of March 30, 2006

Father claims self defense in shooting of son

A father who shot his son in the arm Tuesday night said he acted in self defense to prevent his son from assaulting him and his wife with a metal pipe.

Police told John [] Jr., 30, the son of John [] Sr., that he was under arrest Monday while he was en route to Elliot Hospital in Manchester.

Officials said [] Jr. drove to his parents’ home at 21 King Charles Drive on Monday and smashed in their glass storm door with a metal pipe he brought with him. Police believe his actions stemmed from an earlier argument he had with his parents about his pregnant girlfriend.

Court documents reveal [] Jr. threatened to kill his parents multiple times before [] Sr. fired at least two shots at his son with a .38-caliber pistol, injuring the younger man’s left arm. Detectives confiscated the gun and the metal pipe as evidence for their investigation.

Police said they initially responded to a call from neighbor Kenneth Tomaswick, who lives directly across the street. Tomaswick told officials he heard tires squealing and three minutes later gun shots at the [] home.

His story coincides with the written statement police received from [] Sr.’s wife, Linda []. She told police she had been chatting online with her son Monday night when she told him she thought his girlfriend’s pregnancy was a mistake.

UPDATE: I have removed the family name in the interests of their privacy. The original article is no longer available online.


March 31, 2006

Lansing, Michigan

From Lansing’s of March 28, 2006

Man Arrested After Local Road Rage Incident

One person is under arrest after road rage on Cedar Street leads to a heated exchange in a parking lot. It happened Monday afternoon on Cedar Street near Willoughby in Delhi Township when two drivers heading north on Cedar got into a fight.

One driver rammed his car into the other, causing minor damage. The drivers then pulled into a Burger King parking lot. One driver got out of his car with a baseball bat and approached the other driver, who then pulled a gun. Police arrived and arrested the driver with the bat. Police say the man with the gun had a legal permit to carry the weapon.

March 30, 2006

Sanford, North Carolina

From the Sanford Herald of March 29, 2006

Dawson cleared

It took a jury only 2 1/2 hours Tuesday to decide that Horace Dawson was not guilty of murder in the shooting death of Richard Raab.

Dawson, 68, has been on trial for the past week in connection with the shooting, which happened the morning of Oct. 24, 2004, at the intersection of Mc Leod Drive and Wicker Street.

Dawson never denied that he shot and killed Raab, who had been his neighbor on Pendergrass Road for the past nine years. His attorney, Jonathan Silverman, con­tended throughout the weeklong trial that Dawson acted in self­defense.

“It’s been a nightmare, but I feel freer right now than I have in a long time,” Dawson said after the trial. “You’re never sure of anything, but we were pretty confident throughout. I had the best lawyer in North Carolina, and that’s where you’ve got to start.” Silverman said, “Mr. Dawson is a very nice man and his family has been through a lot. We think the jury made the right deci­sion.” Assistant District Attorney Mike Beam had argued throughout the course of the trial that Raab was shot not out of self-defense, but of anger that developed over a six-year period of acrimony between the two that started when Raab accused Dawson of sleep­ing with his then-wife. Dawson had repeated­ly denied that accusation.

“This defendant was not scared. He was mad,” Beam said. “The defendant said he feared for his life. Where’s the proof of that? He said it because he had to. Because it’s the only way to consider what he did (was) self­defense.” The incident that left Raab dead started with Dawson driv­ing on Wicker Street toward Kiwanis Park. He noticed Raab — who had made a habit over the years of following and badger­ing Dawson — waiting for him at Winterlocken Drive. As Dawson passed, Raab pulled out from behind him.

Witness testimony indicated that the vehicles both pulled onto Mc Leod Drive and were involved in a minor accident, which led both men to get out of their vehicles. Aphysical alter­cation began, and ended with Dawson producing a .38-caliber revolver and shooting Raab five times in the chest and head.

Dawson then got in his truck, drove home and dialed 911.

Silverman argued to the jury that Raab brought the shooting on himself with his years of taunting and harassing Dawson and his wife, Jackie. Testimony from a variety of witnesses indicat­ed that Raab would yell at Dawson any time he saw him in the yard of his home, direct speakers at the Dawson home and blare loud music, fire shots from a rifle into Dawson’s outbuilding, throw dead squirrels into the Dawsons’ yard and point a video camera at their home.

Much of the harassment was in an effort to draw Dawson into a physical confrontation, which led Dawson to buy the gun he eventually used to kill Raab, Dawson testified.

The core of Silverman’s argument was that Raab’s reason for being on Mc Leod Drive on Oct. 24 justified his shooting.

“Once you understand what Richard Raab was doing on Mc Leod Drive that morning, you can understand why he was shot. You can understand why Horace Dawson was acting in self-defense. And you can understand why Horace Dawson is not guilty of any crime,” Silverman said. “Richard Raab ulti­mately forced Horace Dawson to act in defense of his own life.” Superior Court Judge Frank Lanier presided over the trial.

March 29, 2006

Philadelphia, Pennsylvnia

From the Philadelphia Inquirer of March 29, 2006

Would-be victim kills man trying to rob him

A man being mugged on a residential street last night in the city’s West Oak Lane section fatally shot the 34-year-old man trying to rob him, authorities said.

The robber approached his would-be victim, who police said may have been a retired SEPTA police officer, about 10:15 p.m. on the 6500 block of North 16th Street and announced a holdup. The victim, who apparently had a handgun on him, shot the man once in the chest, police said. He was taken to Albert Einstein Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.

It was not immediately clear if the would-be robber was armed, police said. The names of the two men were not released.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer of March 30, 2006

Retired SEPTA officer won’t be charged in slaying

No charges will be filed against a retired SEPTA police officer who killed a robber who had attacked him at gunpoint demanding money Tuesday night, police said yesterday.

Sgt. Jim Pauley, a police spokesman, said James Johnson, 63, of West Philadelphia, told investigators that he had just gotten out of his car and was crossing the 6500 block of North 16th Street in West Oak Lane about 10:15 p.m. when the robber came up behind him, grabbed him around the neck, and ordered him to the ground at gunpoint, Pauley said.

The man, with a gun pointed at Johnson’s head, demanded money, Pauley said. Johnson pulled his own gun and fired several shots, hitting the robber in the chest.

The robber, identified as Shawn Greenwood, 35, of the 1100 block of East Stafford Street, was pronounced dead at the scene. Police said a 9mm handgun was found near Greenwood’s body. Court records show Greenwood had a lengthy criminal record that includes drug violations and robbery.

Really generous of them under the circumstances, don’t you think?

March 29, 2006

Volusia County, Florida

From Orlando’s of March 28, 2006

Homeowner Fires Back At BB Gun Vandals

A Volusia County homeowner turned the tables after someone riddled his house with BB gun pellets for the second time. This time, he fired back. The sheriff’s department is still looking into the shooting.

This was the second time the homeowner had been shot at by vandals. This time, he said, he decided to shoot back.

Over $1,000 worth of tempered glass has been thrown in the trash.

“I could hear the sound of glass breaking. It sounded like it’s raining glass,” Barry Hartman said.

Unfortunately for Hartman, this was the second time he had a glass storm in his living room. Last December, vandals shot out his picture window. Now it happened again.

“I heard three pops,” Hartman said.

He though it sounded like a real gun, which is not far fetched. There’s not a lot of sound difference between a high powered BB gun and a .22 pistol. He grabbed his own and leaned out the window to see who was shooting at him.

“As I leaned out, I could see what appeared to be a rifle being held, so I started shooting,” he said.

Hartman fired three shots towards the ground in front of the vandals. They got the point and ran away. He hopes they remember what they learned.

“I hope they don’t come back. I’m getting tired of this,” he said.

Hartman was not charged with any crime. Volusia County is still looking to see if he broke any law. As for the vandals, firing anything, even a BB gun, into an occupied home is a felony.

March 28, 2006

Lee County, Florida

Update From Fort Myers’ of March 28, 2006

Man Who Shot Intruder Acted in Self Defense

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office says Todd Rasmussen, who lives on Camellia Drive in North Fort Myers, was acting in self defense when he shot a man hanging around in his backyard.

The Sheriff’s Office has identified the man as 35-year old Michael Frazzini of Cape Coral.

“I turned around and I seen him and I was like oh my God,” said his daughter 16-year old Amanda.

16-year old Amanda Rasmussen was the first to discover a masked man hiding behind the shed in her families backyard.

She ran inside to tell her older brother Corey.

“Guy popped up out of nowhere about six foot, 250, really big, had a mask on his face,” said Corey.

Corey thought the man was trying to break into the home. He was trying to scare the Frazzini off. But the man wouldn’t back down and he had something in his hand.

“In the dark they didn’t know what he had,” said Corey’s step-mother Michelle.

The family says they were already on edge because their house was targeted in the last few months.

“Somebody’s been knocking on a window and paint-balling our house doing a lot of stuff,” said Michelle.

Father and son say they repeatedly warned the Frazzini to leave the property.

“The guy just kept coming and kept coming. And after my dad told him he will open fire he turned toward my dad and said do you want a piece of me too and he started advancing toward my father and my father shot him,” said Corey.

Frazzini died at the scene.

Amanda and Michelle Rasmussen say they are still a little scared. But they will rest a little easier knowing that man won’t be coming back.

The Sheriff’s Office has not released the name of the man who was killed.

From Fort Myers’ of March 28, 2006

Masked man shot to death by resident

A man dressed in black and wearing a mask was shot to death by a North Fort Myers resident Monday night.

The incident happened at 848 Camelia Drive, south of Hancock Bridge Parkway.

Around 9 p.m., the resident heard a noise in his backyard and went to investigate. He found the masked man and shot him after a confrontation.

The masked man died at the scene. His identity is being withheld until next of kin can be notified.

March 27, 2006

Dayton, Ohio

From Dayton’s of March 27, 2006

Police: Overnight Altercation Leads To Fatal Shooting

Police in Dayton are investigating a fatal shooting that happened at an apartment complex on Burkhardt Avenue on Sunday night. Investigators said the shooting may have been in self-defense.

According to people at the scene, the shooting victim was going from apartment to apartment in a rage, banging on doors after allegedly hitting and threatening his girlfriend.

On Monday, the coroner released the victim’s identity. He is William Abrams II, 33, and lived with his girlfriend and daughter at the apartment complex where he was found dead.

Police said earlier in the evening, Abrams was banging on residents’ doors looking for his daughter and threatening people. His girlfriend, who claims Abrams beat her, called her ex-husband to the apartment to help her.

Investigators said the ex-husband confronted Abrams, who he claimed had a knife. Police said he ended up shooting Abrams.

Abrams was found in a hallway of one of the apartment buildings. A 911 dispatcher told the ex-boyfriend to unload his gun and to go outside and meet police with his hands up. He surrendered, was questioned and released.

Detectives plan to meet with prosecutors to determine if the shooting was in self-defense.

March 27, 2006

Montgomery, Alabama

From the Montgomery Advertiser of March 27, 2006

Kickball argument leads to weekend shootings

Montgomery police believe that a kickball game among children escalated into two days of gunfire at a Montgomery apartment complex over the weekend.

The shootings left one person dead and two others injured after police were called to 1627 Northgate Drive Saturday and Sunday. The apartment building is located inside Crown Point Town Homes off of Lower Wetumpka Road.

On Saturday at approximately 7:15 p.m. police responded to a call from the residence in reference to a shooting.

“Upon arrival officers made contact with a male, Ross Pettiway, 48, of 1620 Sheffield Road,” said Capt. Huey Thornton, public information officer for the Montgomery Police Department.

Pettiway told police that while visiting his cousin at the Northgate Drive home, he was shot by an unknown person while he sat on the couch. Three shots were fired through the closed front door.

Pettiway was transported to Baptist Medical Center South where he was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

The next day, according to a police report, officers returned to the scene at 4:16 p.m. in connection with two people being shot.

Upon their arrival, officers located Jeffery Lyndell Burnett, 21, of 1611 Northgate Drive and Crystal Shephard, 24, of 1627 Northgate Drive. Both suffered from gunshot wounds.

“Burnett received a gunshot wound to the upper torso. He was transported to Jackson Hospital,” Thornton said. “He was pronounced dead at 4:47 p.m.”

Shephard was also transported to Jackson Hospital, where she was treated and released for three non-life threatening gunshot wounds to her lower back, right arm and left forearm.

“Apparently, all of these shootings stemmed from an incident involving children who were apparently arguing over a kickball game,” Thornton said. “The adults became involved and the incident escalated into the shootings that occurred Saturday and Sunday.”

After the shooting a 16-year-old male was taken into custody for questioning, but was released.

“We were unable to establish enough probably cause to charge the 16 year old, because there’s a good possibility the 16 year old fired in self-defense,” Thornton said.

Thornton said a grand jury will decide if charges will be brought against the teen.

“Burnett fired into the residence on Saturday and was back at the residence on Sunday, when he was shot by the 16 year old,” Thornton said.

Witnesses said Burnett was with two other unknown males when he fired at the home on Saturday and Sunday. Police said several different types of shell casings were found at the scene.

“At this time we haven’t identified these subjects,” Thornton said.

March 27, 2006

Moffat County, Colorado

From the Craig Daily Press of March 27, 2006

Moffat County man shot to death

A domestic dispute Sunday evening left a Moffat County man dead, shot in the chest by his ex-girlfriend’s son in an incident police say was justifiable self-defense.

Craig Police say Mario Vigil, 60, of Moffat County, broke into a home in the 800 block of Washington Street armed with a .30-30-caliber rifle.

The homeowner, whose name has not been released, grabbed a shotgun, shot Vigil once in the chest, and hid in a bedroom with his 9-year-old son, according to a statement from police.

The gunshot wounded Vigil but did not stop him, according to police.

Vigil shot through the door of the room the homeowner was hiding in and tried to break down the door, according to police.

The homeowner grabbed another gun, a .30-06-caliber rifle, and shot Vigil through the door, striking him in the hip, according to police.

When police arrived, they found Vigil dead, lying on the floor outside the bedroom, according to the statement.

The homeowner and his son were still hiding in the bedroom, according to police.

Vigil had been involved in a domestic dispute earlier Sunday involving his ex-girlfriend at a home northwest of Craig, according to police.

In that incident, police said Vigil fired one shot at his ex-girlfriend and threatened to hurt her family, including her grandson.

Police said Monday that the investigation into the case is ongoing and will be referred to the district attorney’s office.

The statement from police said the shooting appears to be have been justifiable self-defense.

From the Craig Daily Press of April 5, 2006

D.A.: No charges filed in shooting

The Craig man who shot and killed an intruder at his home in Craig last week will not be charged with a crime, the district attorney announced Tuesday.

Mario Cruz Vigil, 60, was shot March 26 at a house in the 800 block of Washington Street after police say he broke into the home, armed with a gun. The homeowner, Josh Jackson, 33, shot Vigil twice, once in the chest with a shotgun and once in the thigh with a .30-06-caliber rifle. An autopsy showed Vigil died from the thigh wound.

District Attorney Bonnie Roe-sink said that after reviewing police reports, her office decided the incident was “a clear case of justifiable homicide.”

In a statement released Tues-day, Roesink said no charges would be filed in the case.

“It’s not only self-defense, it’s under what we call the ‘make my day law,'” Roesink said, referring to the Colorado law that gives residents immunity if they kill intruders.

Roesink said that in her 19 years at the District Attorney’s Office, she has never dealt with a case that was such a clear example of self-defense.

“This is a classic case of it,” she said.

After the incident, Craig police said the case appeared to be justifiable self-defense.

Craig police Chief Walt Van-atta said Tuesday that Roesink’s findings reflected what investigators saw.


March 27, 2006

Kansas City, Missouri

From the Kansas City Star of March 27, 2006

Home invasion leads to deaths

Kansas City police responding to a report of a home invasion on Sunday afternoon found two men dead in a truck that had crashed into a tree.

Officers were called to the 5700 block of Newton Avenue about 12:30 p.m. Police spokesman Sgt. Tony Sanders said a homeowner told police that two men in their 20s had kicked in his front door. The homeowner told police he had been involved in a short exchange of gunfire with the men.

Officers found the two men, who had suffered gunshot wounds, dead inside the vehicle, which had crashed into a tree a short distance away.

Sanders said police had not yet determined whether the men died of the gunshot wounds or the crash. He said the homeowner was being interviewed about the incident and was cooperating, but details of how the shooting unfolded were not released.

“We’re investigating it as a home invasion or a robbery,” Sanders said. “We’re not sure what the circumstances were.”

Sanders said police were told a third person might have been involved and they were still investigating that on Sunday evening.

Names of the victim and the homeowner were not released. No other injuries were reported.