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Phoenix Man Wounds Suspected Car Thief

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by PhoenixRookie, Apr 25, 2008.

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  1. PhoenixRookie

    PhoenixRookie Member

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    We used to hang horse thiefs, so this seems justified to me.


    Homeowner pursues suspected thief, shoots him
    by Brent Whiting - Apr. 25, 2008 11:46 AM
    The Arizona Republic
    Police are sorting out a shooting that took place early Friday in northwest Phoenix, resulting in the wounding of a suspected auto burglar and the closing of 43rd Avenue south of Bell Road.

    The injured man, who suffered wounds that were not life-threatening, was shot by an irate homeowner who told officers he gave chase and fired after somebody tried to break into his vehicle, police said.

    There were no immediate arrests as investigators gathered evidence and tried to determine whether the shooter, under the facts of the case, was justified in using deadly force, said Detective Stacie Derge, a Phoenix police spokeswoman.

    "Nobody is in custody," Derge said. "We have a lot of investigation to do. We will look at the circumstances of the whole situation and determine what charges will be filed."

    Neither the shooter nor the wounded man was identified.

    According to Derge, the incident began shortly before 5 a.m. outside a home in the 18600 block of North 31st Drive, northwest of Union Hills Drive and Interstate 17.

    The homeowner told police that his car alarm sounded and he stepped outside to see what was happening. He said somebody tried to break into his car and he saw a man walking away from the vehicle.

    The suspected auto burglar stepped into a pickup truck and drove away, while the homeowner got into his vehicle, a Pontiac, and gave chase, following the man through surrounding neighborhoods.

    Eventually, police said, they ended up on 43rd Avenue south of Bell Road, where the homeowner fired several rounds into the pickup truck, wounding the driver at least twice.

    Both the wounded man and the homeowner drove home. A female passenger in the pickup truck escaped unharmed.

    When the wounded man arrived home, family members drove him to a hospital for treatment. The homeowner, who also had a passenger in his vehicle, was contacted by police at his residence.

    Police closed 43rd Avenue between Bell Road and Paradise Lane as officers processed evidence, including car parts and shell casings scattered in the southbound lanes of the roadway.

    In general, Arizona allows the use of physical and deadly force if a "reasonable person" believes it is immediately necessary to prevent crimes such as arson, burglary, kidnapping and all forms of murder and sex crimes.

    Under a measure that Gov. Janet Napolitano signed into law in April 2006, people are justified in using deadly physical force if they reasonably believe their life or the life of another is in danger.

    In the event charges are brought in such a case, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a defendant claiming self-defense had acted without justification
     
  2. romma

    romma Member

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    This homeowner might be in for a wee bit of trouble here on this one...
     
  3. PhoenixRookie

    PhoenixRookie Member

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    Yeah, I am sure he will be once the dust is settled. It really wasn't a good idea because innocent people could've been hit. But I tell you, since Arizona leads the country in car thefts, you tend to start thinking this way sometimes.
     
  4. JesseL

    JesseL Member

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    While I was going to school in Phoenix, I lived within a half mile of there (33rd Ave. and Bell Rd.) and had my car stolen. It doesn't sound like this shooting was legally justified, but I can completely sympathize with the urge.

    My car was recovered about a week later; abandoned with the clutch burned out, the windshield broken, the gas tank empty, and the low oil alarm buzzing.:fire::cuss:
     
  5. t3rmin

    t3rmin Member

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    Why did the homeowner bring a passenger?
     
  6. lacoochee

    lacoochee Member

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    If he gets charged I wonder if the jury will actually vote to convict?
     
  7. hddeluxe

    hddeluxe Member

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    Do you think the purported theif will think twice about breaking into a car next time?
     
  8. bakert

    bakert Member

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    romma, you've sure got that right.
     
  9. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    This is my neighborhood. I had a car stolen a mile from where the man lives, and half a mile from the shooting.

    Not much to go on from the article, and the people who know are either talking to their lawyers, or talking to the police, or are the police. The rest of us, we're just making stuff up.

    Under Arizona law, certain uses of deadly force, and certain threats of uses of deadly force, are permitted to stop the commission of some crimes. But not, as far as I recall, for chasing down an escaping criminal.

    The article does not say--and perhaps even the police don't know--whether or not a justifiable use of deadly force occurred at the end of the chase.

    Nice reporter, giving the Governor all the credit. First off, self defense has always been lawful in Arizona. But around 10 or 15 years back, if I've got my history right, an "affirmative defense" bill went into law. With "affirmative defense," rather than the state proving you guilty, in a self defense shooting you first had to admit your guilt ("yes, I shot him"), and then prove that your shooting was allowed under Arizona law. It was backwards. The AzCDL-backed bill the governor sided into law in 2006 got rid of affirmative defense and put things back to the way they should be--innocent until proven guilty.
     
  10. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    The homeowner violated enough laws that he's going to meet me professionally. I'll be happy to tell him what an incredibly stupid move that was.

    Yeah, Wayne, Castle Doctrine. AZ also has another great law - no civil liabilty for justified conduct.
    What we DON'T have is a law saying if someone makes you mad you can chase and shoot them - which is what we had here. Based on what I've read, (no access to court papers, filings and such), there was never a Self Defense incident at the beginning of this, and the other party, as required by law "clearly communicated his desire to end the conflict", by leaving at high speed, and the homeowner elected to follow, utilizing deadly force along the way. This in the eyes of the law, is a totally separate incident, and if the BG had killed the homeowner, he, now, could claim Self Defense!

    If he gets the book thrown at him, Attempted Murder One, twice, Aggravated Assault for every round fired, Reckless Endangerment for every round fired, plus others that could be tagged on.

    Hope he looks good in orange. That car he was so anxious to protect will have a new owner soon.
     
  11. svtruth

    svtruth Member

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    Slightly OT, but

    related. I have heard that AZ relaxed in car carry laws and carjackings went way down.
    Truth?
     
  12. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    armoredman, there is insufficient information in the article to know whether it went down the way you read it (where the homeowner chased the thief and shot him in retribution) or another way (the homeowner chased the thief in order to provide information to the police, but the thief turned it into a self defense situation by pulling a weapon on the homeowner).

    The latter, while arguably foolhardy, would be lawful under Arizona law.
     
  13. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    Not enough info. From the press release it sounds like the home owner pursued him and then punished him with bullets. Clearly not acceptable use of force in modern times.

    However that might not be the case. For all we know he jumped in his car to follow the guy to learn where he was and alert the authorities. When he finaly ended up someplace with the alleged criminal, perhaps the criminal tried to run him over to escape and the guy then defended himself.
    He may have put himself in that situation, but it does not mean self defense would not be valid if he was just trying to get the man's information and then was placed in great danger.

    So it looks like he was in the wrong, but that is all assumption. The press release from most police departments always tell such stories from the angle that anything except letting a criminal get away and reporting it to police to ducument was a bad choice.
    So it always sounds like someone is being a vigilante if they deviate from that.
    That may or may not be the case.
     
  14. Ron James

    Ron James Member

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    The homeowner was arrested and charged with a number of offences. The " alleged thief " was released with out any changes. There was no proof he had committed any offence. The dumb Ass homeowner heard his car alarm go off, saw some one walking away (The car was parked outside on the curb ) . He chases him , spraying bullets all over the city, and shoots the guy twice. The car had not been broken into, there wasn't even a hand print on it. Come on , how stupid can you be, The homeowner is going to jail for a long long time. I live in Arizona and those are the facts. Now how many of your are going to try and justice what the home owner did.
     
  15. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    Ron, Ain't that something. Yep, More info is in.

    From Homeowner arrested after suspected thief chased, shot (azcentral.com):
     
  16. Don Lu

    Don Lu Member

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    very irresponsable to fire at someone b/c they are walking down the street when your car alarm is going off..
     
  17. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Gee, darn, I hate it when I'm right. See you soon, Terrel Moore, we'll leave the light on for ya!
     
  18. davepool

    davepool Member

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    Not only will the shooter be prosecuted criminally, i would be willing to bet the thief AKA "victim" has a lawyer waiting to file a civil lawsuit. The home owner showed incredibly bad judgement by chasing the theif, and absolute stupidity by firing at the truck in that nieghborhood, my sister and my three nephews just moved from that area 2 months ago. I hate thieves as much as anyone but the the guy that did the shooting deserves to be jailed for his acts. You just do not chase someone and shoot at them for breaking in to your stinkin car!
     
  19. Pat-inCO

    Pat-inCO Member

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    Amazing!

    IF the home owner caught the person in the act of breaking in, then I might say there was a little justification. To go back in to the house, get a gun, get a passenger and then chase the purp over a fair portion of town :what: , NAH!

    If this home owner doesn't get his bacon fried beyond crisp, I'd be surprised. :rolleyes:
     
  20. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    If he was a LEO could he have put 50 bullet holes into his own stolen car and have a chance at getting aquitted?

    We don't know all the details though.
     
  21. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    Harve Curry, It doesn't matter, because that's not the topic of this thread.
     
  22. USMC 1975

    USMC 1975 Member

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    I guess my feelings over this incident is directly tied to what my attorney told me.

    " If your life is no longer in danger, never shoot. Retreat and call the cops. If you do shoot, you better be damn ready to prove that your life was in imminent danger and you didn't go looking for the danger. "

    This guys life was NOT in danger. The only thing in danger was his car being broken into. Big deal. Call the insurance company and get the damage car fixed. Instead he plays Super Leo.

    I believe that if the prosecutor follows the law he will bring charges against this guy. All he needed to do was get his tag number and call 911 and let the cops handle it. Instead John Wayne jumps on his horse and gives chase then shoots the guys pickup truck up, wounding the driver in the process.

    This is what worries me the most over CCW laws. Cowboys such as this guy are going to give the anti gun people more ammunition and make the CCW laws tougher for us all.

    Sorry guys, but he had no damn business shooting. Notta.......

    Chris
     
  23. LawBot5000

    LawBot5000 Member

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    I think this case will hinge on the size of the criminal record of the shootee.
     
  24. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

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    Whatever criminal record the "shootee" may have would probably be excluded.
     
  25. Angel1999

    Angel1999 Member

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    Victim

    I'm not advocating a loose canon firing away in the city, but that's not what happened. That was the 3rd time in the same week that Mr. Moore had been the victim of thieves. The whole street has been vandalized & robbed. The police had been called many times but some of their responses were, "they're probably in Mexico by now". There is fingerprint dust over the property of those in that neighborhood. Mr. Moore's tools were stolen, leaving him in debt to buy new ones time after time & he has a family to feed. The vehicle with the suspect turned a 180 & came straight at Mr. Moore & his brother-in-law. After getting away, the suspect went to pick up his girlfriend so that she could provide him an alibi before going to the hospital. Meanwhile, Mr. Moore had already called the police & told them that he had fired his gun & wanted to report what happened. The neighbors are tired of being the victims & it was just one time too many for Mr. Moore.
     
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