Good news. The woman who shot the robber will not be charged.
That makes this a good shoot and, probably, a perfect example of a justified use of deadly force in self-defense.
Too bad we can't see the video...
Store slaying called self-defense
Co-owner acted responsibly, authorities say
August 20, 2007 - 11:38PM
A Yuba City market owner who shot and killed an armed robber will not be charged with a crime, Sutter County District Attorney Carl Adams said Monday.
Adams said the woman, who co-owns the Percy Avenue Market, acted in self-defense when she pulled a .38 caliber revolver from a drawer the night of Aug. 10 and shot Billy Lloyd Saling at point-blank range.
Adams did not name Hamdan in a press release, but confirmed she is Suad Hamdan, wife of co-owner Chris Hamdan. She earlier declined comment.
Hamdan did what was both legal and right, said Adams.
“Robbery is defined by the law as a forcible and atrocious crime. Homicide is justifiable when it is committed while resisting” such a crime, said Adams.
Saling had a loaded .22 caliber revolver in his hand when Hamdan fired one time, hitting him in the upper left lung. She fired a second time as he ran out the door but missed and hit a wall, said Adams.
Saling collapsed and died in a parking lot five to eight seconds after being hit, the district attorney said.
“It’s pretty clear she was convinced he would shoot her,” said Adams. “It’s clear she thought her life was at risk.”
Saling had five bullets in his six-shot revolver but did not fire. It was not clear if one of the rounds was “under the hammer” when Hamdan fired her gun, said Adams.
The incident at the checkout counter was captured on three of the store’s nine surveillance cameras, he said.
Dressed all in black and the with the hood of a sweatshirt concealing his face, Saling immediately went to the counter after entering the store and demanded money. He pointed the gun in Hamdan’s general direction as he leaned over, his elbows resting on the counter, said Adams.
“He demanded money from (Hamdan) and she complied. He then told her it was not enough and demanded more money,” he said.
When Hamdan reached into the drawer for the gun, Saling may have thought she was reaching for more money.
As he stood up from his leaning position, she shot him, said Adams.
“The clerk hands money to the robber three times from three different locations and, as the robber is demanding more money, the clerk takes a handgun from a drawer and shoots,” he said.
Saling could have been distracted by a patron standing at the back of the store who may have been calling police on a cell phone, said Adams.
Adams estimated Hamdan fired from a distance of three or four feet.
The surveillance tape will not be released, he said.
“It is always a hard thing when a citizen is forced to take a human life, no matter what the situation. While my condolences go out to the family of the deceased, I am also deeply sorry for the clerk and her family. She has to know that she not only did the legal thing, but in these circumstances, she also did the right thing by acting to protect herself and to protect her husband,” he said.