Archive for February, 2008

Arizona: Tucson Homeowner Kills Intruder

February 29, 2008

Tuscon, Arizona

From KOLD of February 29, 2008

Tucson Homeowner Kills Intruder

A deadly shootout between burglars and a homeowner took place Thursday night just after nine on Tucson’s east side, near I-10 and Wilmot Road.

Police say three men busted into a home in a quiet new neighborhood. They then shot the homeowner in the arm; the homeowner returned fire and hit one of the burglars, who later died at a hospital. According to Tucson police, when they arrived the 29 year-old home owner and his two year old daughter had taken refuge in a bathroom. The home owner suffered minor injuries, and the little girl was not hurt.

Police are looking for two suspects, but have not released a description. Investigators said they do not know what the relationship is between the home owner and the suspects.

Texas: Burglary Suspect Shot Dead In East Oak Cliff

February 28, 2008

Dallas, Texas

From CBS11 of February 27, 2008

Burglary Suspect Shot Dead In East Oak Cliff

A recent rash of burglaries in the east Oak Cliff area of Dallas may be over after a suspect was shot dead on Wednesday morning.

The incident started Tuesday night, when someone threw a brick through the window of a home, located in the 2200 block of Scotland Drive in the east Oak Cliff area of Dallas. The home belongs to an elderly father by the name of Otis Fagan Sr.

According to Fagan Sr., he’s been burglarized six times in the last six months. His son, Otis Fagan Jr., had come over on Tuesday to help board up the window. He drove past the house again several times Tuesday night to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

While driving past the house at about 6 a.m. Wednesday morning, Fagan Jr. noticed a beam of light coming from the backyard. He stopped to check things out and discovered a man inside the backyard tool shed.

Fagan Jr. confronted 43-year-old Gerald Foley, the suspected burglar, with a gun. Police say Foley had $2,000 worth of Fagan’s property. According to police, the suspect then attacked Fagan Jr., who fired off possibly four bullets.

After the encounter, the suspect fled the scene down an alleyway and fell dead into Bakari Thomas’ yard, a neighbor on Locust Street.

“It’s very scary,” said Thomas. There’s only so much you can do when you got a house, and you try to be safe in your own home.”

CBS 11 News spoke with the elderly father on Wednesday afternoon. He said that he did not see anything, but heard noises outside in the moments just before the shooting. Fagan Sr. also said that he had triggered his home security alarm in hopes of scaring away the suspected burglar, but that it did not work.

According to his sister, Fagan Jr. was licensed to carry the gun. Attempts to speak with Fagan Jr. were not successful. He rushed inside the home before issuing a comment.

“He’s under a lot of stress and inner pain associated with what all took place, but hopefully the Lord will see us all through,” said Fagan Sr.

Both generations of Fagans were taken to police headquarters on Wednesday for questioning. Police have said that this appears to be a legal shooting, but are continuing to investigate the case. In the meantime, police have not charged anyone with a crime, but they will refer the incident to a grand jury, as is routine.

“What the individual did – he was protecting his parents property – was absolutely not a crime,” said Dallas Police Lt. Craig Miller.

Pennsylvania: W. Hazleton woman scares off intruder

February 28, 2008

West Hazleton, Pennsylvania

From the Standard Speaker of February 28, 2008

W. Hazleton woman scares off intruder

A burglar fled a West Hazleton home when a resident got a pistol and took a shot at the man Tuesday evening, borough police said.

The incident happened at an East Broad Street home just before 7 p.m., according to the victim, Terri Gavinski. She and her husband, Dave Gavinski, who was at work when the home invasion occurred, talked about her frightening experience Tuesday night.
Terri Gavinski she was relaxing watching TV, when she heard a noise and saw the figure of a man standing at the edge of the hallway leading into her living room.
She said to the man, “Please don’t hurt me.” He responsed by referring to her in a derogatory manner.

She said the man’s head was completely covered with a forest green bandana and it partially covered his face. He also wore dark gloves, possibly black and dark pants, she said.

Terri Gavinski estimated he was roughly 6 feet tall and a bit more muscular. The intruder apparently gained entrance through the side door of their home in the 200 block of East Broad Street.

Terri Gavinski said he demanded cash and valuables.

She again asked him not to hurt her and said her husband had coins and guns that he used for hunting in a case upstairs. He ordered her upstairs and continued to tell her not to withhold any money she might have.

He ordered her to put the coins in bags. While she was doing that, he began to ransack the upstairs.

“He was just throwing our stuff around and opening up drawers. He didn’t seem interested in his rifles in the gun case,” Gavinski said.

The victim said that while the intruder went through their stuff, she went into another bedroom where she spotted a loaded gun her husband had on the gun cabinet.
“At this point I’m a bit foggy about what happened, but he didn’t see me pick up the gun and we walked downstairs with these heavy bags of coins. He had one bag and I had the other and he ordered me to bring it into the kitchen,” she said.

As he was about to go out the side entrance where he came in, she said she took the gun out of her housecoat, raised it and fired a round. The intruder, she said, dropped the bag of coins and ran out.

She knew she didn’t hit him, but she scared him enough to flee to a car parked in the rear of their home, she said.

Her husband said the bullet exited the home through the rear kitchen window into the back garage.

“I called 911 and within a minute the West Hazleton police arrived,” she said.
Later, Hazleton police and state police were at her home helping out. After calling police she called her husband at work and he was home within minutes.
It is a night Terri Gavinski won’t soon forget.

“I am not a gun person. My husband is. He is a hunter and always keeps two loaded guns in the house,” she said.

Kentucky: Hebron Man Shoots Himself in Foot

February 27, 2008

Hebron, Kentucky

From Local 12 WKRC of February 26, 2008

Hebron Man Shoots Himself in Foot

Police are investigating a shooting in Hebron this morning.

49 year old Leonard Gibbons was shot around 11 a.m. in the 2800 block of Donjoy Drive. Gibbons tells officers he heard his garage door open and took a gun to investigate.

Gibbons says when he got to the family room he was attacked from behind by a man wearing a black hood and ski mask with black driving gloves.

The revolver in Gibbons hand discharged, striking him in the inner thigh and foot.

The intruder reportedly took Gibbons money and ran out the garage door. Gibbons was transported to University Hospital with non life-threatening injuries.

California: Motorcycle Shop Owner Shoots At Intruder

February 26, 2008

Bakersfield, California

From KERO of February 26, 2008

Motorcycle Shop Owner Shoots At Intruder

Police are still looking for a burglar who may have been shot by a business owner in central Bakersfield Tuesday morning.

The Bakersfield Police Department said an alarm tipped off the owner at about 4:30 a.m. at a motorcycle repair shop on Chester Lane.

Police said when he arrived, he noticed someone inside the garage. They said the man then charged at the owner, who managed to get off several rounds from a pistol.

It’s unknown if the man was hit. The man escaped.

Contra Costa Man Released For Self-Defense Shooting

February 26, 2008

Contra Costa County, California

From February 25, 2008 CBS channel 5:

CONTRA COSTA CO.: SUSPECT IN BAY POINT KILLING SHOT ROOMMATE IN SELF-DEFENSE

A Bay Point man arrested last week on suspicion of fatally shooting his roommate was released from jail Friday after prosecutors decided the slaying was in self-defense, Contra Costa County Sheriff’s spokesman Jimmy Lee said today.

Andrew Mahler, 33, was detained for questioning Tuesday shortly after sheriff’s deputies found his roommate on the sidewalk in front of their residence at 44 Pensacola St. in the unincorporated community of Bay Point suffering from a gunshot wound, Lee said.

The roommate, 31-year-old William Lenox, was taken to John Muir Medical Center in Concord where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy found that he died form a gunshot wound to the abdomen, Lee said.

The shooting had reportedly occurred inside the roommates’ residence, Lee said. Mahler had then allegedly gone over to a neighbor’s house and either he or the neighbor called for help shortly after 5:30 p.m.

Deputies took Mahler to the station to question him and then officially arrested him at about 10:45 p.m., Lee said. He was booked into the Martinez Detention Facility on suspicion of murder, but when investigators presented the case to the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s office Friday, prosecutors declined to file charges and Mahler was released Friday afternoon, Lee said.

North Carolina: Man Shot in Robbery Attempt

February 25, 2008

Charlotte, North Carolina

From WCNC of February 25, 2008

Shooting ends man’s life of crime

A Charlotte family is grieving after they say their loved one was shot to death by a man he was trying to rob.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police responded to an armed robbery call at the Cricket cell phone store at the Catawba Village shopping center on Mount Holly – Huntersville Road Saturday night.

There, they found a man shot. Medic declared that man dead on the scene, and the only other person in the store was the store’s manager, who wasn’t hurt.

Family members identified the dead man as 54-year-old James Henry Brewer.

His mother broke down in tears in front of the store Saturday night and screamed his name.

“Who killed my son? Who killed my son? James Henry. James Henry,” cried Mary Brewer Givens.

Police had not confirmed the man’s identity Sunday, but Givens said it was her son.

“We all stood there until they brought my son out of the Cricket place,” she recalled, “zipped up in that dead bag.”

Givens told WCNC Sunday that she knows what her son went into the store to do.

“The police told my grandson he had a mask and a gun when he went in there,” said Givens. She knows it’s not the first time he’s had trouble with the law.

A North Carolina Department of Corrections website shows James Henry Brewer has a record back to a kidnapping conviction in 1974, when he was 19.

Three other armed robbery convictions show up since then – the last in 1992. The DOC website said Brewer was released from prison in 2001.

Brewer’s wife, Tamara, said her husband worked in construction for three years after his release, and then stayed home to take care of her.

Tamara Brewer said she has diabetes, and her husband donated a kidney to her for a transplant.

She didn’t deny her husband may have been robbing the store. She said he is a good man who made a “wrong decision.”

“He’s in a better place,” said Tamara Brewer. “It was his time.”

Givens, James Henry Brewer’s mother, said he may be responsible for other cell-phone store robberies, and may have had an accomplice who hasn’t been caught.

Police weren’t available Sunday to confirm family members’ details.

Further links:
Man Shot in Robbery Attempt

Indianapolis Man Shoots Apparent Car Thief

February 24, 2008

Indianapolis, Indiana

From February 23, 2008 WISH channel 8:

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Metro Police say a homeowner shot a man in self-defense outside his eastside home Saturday morning. But it’s not the man’s first time using a gun.

Metro Police were called by a homeowner, Richard Burns, who said he had just shot a man behind his Brookville Road home.

“Apparently he heard a noise outside, went outside to see what was going on, and related to the detectives that this individual came at him with a knife, and which time he fired a shot,” IMPD Sgt. Paul Thompson said.

Burns told detectives the man he shot was coming out of his car, perhaps trying to steal it.

The victim was hit in the chest and taken to Wishard Hospital in serious condition. While doctors work to save the victim’s life, detectives work to figure out a complex case.

Police will determine if this shooting was indeed self-defense. What they’ll also look at is the fact that Mr. Burns has been involved in two other shootings, this year alone.

Florida: Altamonte Springs Homeowner Shoots, Kills Intruder

February 24, 2008

Altamonte Springs, Florida

From Central Florida News of February 23, 2008

Altamonte Springs Homeowner Shoots, Kills Intruder

Seminole County deputies said a homeowner shot and killed a teen who was trying to break into his home overnight.

Deputies said Ryan Realford, 17, approached an undercover deputy’s car in the East Altamonte Springs community with an unidentified substance in his hand.

They said when the teen recognized the person in a car was a deputy, he ran into a nearby backyard and tried to break into a home.

A homeowner said Realford removed a locked screen door and was trying to enter his house through a sliding glass door.

The homeowner said he asked Realford to leave. When he would not, the homeowner told deputies he shot him.

Realford was taken to the hospital where he died.

Deputies said it’s not likely that the homeowner will face charges.

Los Angeles Burglar Shot By Victim

February 22, 2008

Los Angeles, California

From the February 22, 2008 Torrance (California) Daily Breeze:

An intended burglary victim shot at four men breaking into a business in the Harbor Gateway area early this morning.

Los Angeles Police spokesman Richard French said the suspects reportedly entered a building at 18710 S. Normandie Avenue at about 5:30 a.m. Someone in the building, who was described as a victim, fired an unknown amount of rounds at the suspects, French said.

One of the suspects was shot in the hip and taken to a nearby hospital after police arrived. A second suspect was taken into custody, but two suspects got away, French said.

The victim was not injured.

French did not say whether the suspects were attempting to burglarize a marijuana dispensary that is located in that building.