Another would be burglar stopped by gun wielding homeowner
Oct 26, 2007 02:21 PM PST
Lawton- For the second time in just one week a shooting is ruled justified in connection with an attempted burglary. This time it happened in Lawton's Old Town North Addition in the 500 block of Bell. The homeowner says he was asleep in the middle of the afternoon when he heard someone trying to break in. He says his first reaction was to grab his gun to stop the would be burglar in his tracks.
This is a very separate case from Tuesday's incident where the burglar was killed. This would be burglar - who also happened to be a 17 year old boy - was not hit by gunfire. He got lucky because he very well could have been killed - and the law would have allowed it.
Like many homeowners in Lawton, Andy Miguez says he's been extra cautious of burglars lately. Especially after, he says, his neighbors home has been victimized a handful of times recently. What he didn't know was that he was next.
"Somebody rang my doorbell. Knocked on the door and I didn't answer it," says Miguez. "They lifted my mail slot up and looked in my mail slot and I could see somebody out there moving around - and they came around the other side of the house and jumped the fence," he says.
Miguez says he's CLEET certified - the same training law enforcement officers receive for a would be burglar trying to get through a window. "I grabbed my gun and I came out through the back door to see if I could catch them," he says. "And I caught the kid right there trying to pry open my window. He was up against the house and he turned toward me and he had a screwdriver in his hand or something that's when I shot."
He fired two shots - both misses. Miguez says the boy jumped the fence and took off running down the street until police caught him a few blocks away. The District Attorney's Office says Miguez's actions were justified under several laws - including the "Make My Day", and "Stand Your Ground" laws.
"I believe I have a right to protect my home and belongings in my home and my family," says Miguez. "You know, this is my property. I'm buying it. I'm paying for it. So I have a right." But, with two similar incidents this week - both justified - will it lead to more homeowners arming themselves to potentially fire upon bad guys who are only trying to steal?
"I don't think everybody ought to be running up and down the street with a gun," says Miguez. "But, if you buy a gun legally and you have a concealed carry permit and you have taken classes, I think you ought to be able to arm yourself to protect yourself and your property." He says this teenager initially tried to hit a house a few doors down from his, but when he rang the doorbell and heard someone inside, he moved on to the next target. Miguez says he picked the wrong house.
That 17 year old boy has been charged with attempted first degree burglary under the youthful offender act. He's now in the Comanche County Jail.