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Vet kills intruder. Good shoot or bad shoot ?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by TheFringe, May 5, 2007.

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  1. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/05/ap_burglarshot_070504/

    War vet, home early, kills burglar

    The Associated Press
    Posted : Friday May 4, 2007 6:25:32 EDT

    AUGUSTA, Ga. — A man authorities say had broken into an Army officer’s home to steal guns was shot to death by the Iraq war veteran, who had come home early.

    Capt. Barre Bollinger told police he returned from work around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday and found his house had been ransacked, Richmond County sheriff’s investigator Thomas Johnson said.

    Bollinger, who is stationed at Fort Gordon, entered his bedroom and noticed that guns were missing.

    He grabbed his SKS rifle — a weapon similar to an AK47 assault rifle — and called 911, Johnson said.

    “While on the phone with 911, he sees the suspect approaching his back door,” Johnson said. “Because he believes the man now is armed with his stolen weapons, Mr. Bollinger fires at him three times.”

    Errol Lavar Royal, 29, was shot at least twice in the stomach area. He was later pronounced dead at Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

    Royal lived with his parents near the home that was burglarized, police said. A search of his home turned up two guns taken from Bollinger’s house and marijuana, Johnson said.

    Police had no immediate plans to charge Bollinger in the shooting.


    I have started a bit of controversy on another forum by stating this was a bad shoot based on the news account.

    He sees a man approaching his back door and presumes he is armed, then shoots him 3 times ? What if this person had been a friend of the burglar happening upon the scene for the first time ?
    In most states an un-armed intruder would need to be inside your dwelling for lethal force to be justified. Conversely, if the guy in the backyard had been brandishing as he approached the back door, homeowner could then use lethal force as he would be imminent fear for his life. The individual was neither inside nor brandishing according to the news account.

    Personally I am glad that a criminal's career has come to an end, but I'm not so sure that I (a long-haired rock musician) would be spared prosecution by the authorities given the same scenario had I been the homeowner.
     
  2. Kindrox

    Kindrox Member

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    A good deal of the truth was likely left out of the story. Since the Army officer was not arrested/charged, I think you can say with certainty that important information was left out of the story, so the debate is a moot point.

    What other stories, missing key information, could we also debate?
     
  3. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    I'm guessing the Joejaw statute (or judicial interpretation) includes the curtilage.
     
  4. Heavy Metal Hero

    Heavy Metal Hero Member

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    I fail to see how this is a bad shoot?

    I realize a lot may be left out. We do not know what he saw, he could have I.D. a non-friendly. I would have fired too if someone was at my back door and I had just been robbed of weapons. A visitor, whom I don't know, has no right coming to my BACK door anyways.

    Don't do the crime if you don't want the risk.
     
  5. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    Personally I'm pleased that he's not being charged, but I'm still not sure that (according to the brief news account) shooting an un-armed individual in your backyard legally qualifies as a good shoot, especially during daylight hours. Again, glad he is being given the benefit of doubt, and I agree there is much more to the story that is not being disclosed. I however would have waited a few more seconds for the individual to enter my house.
     
  6. Lupinus

    Lupinus Member

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    Sounds like a personal problem
     
  7. akodo

    akodo Member

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    What if this person had been a friend of the burglar happening upon the scene for the first time

    this 'what if' is just silly. A 'friend of the burglar' who also is in the home is considered an accomplice. So what you have is multiple theives who are armed and have no regard for the law.
     
  8. HiVelocity

    HiVelocity Member

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    Intruder killed by Vet...........

    Okay, just food for thought.

    1- None of us were there, we don't know the circumstances; no armchair quarterbacking here.

    2- Did the Army Officer reasonably fear for his life? I say, "Yes".

    3- In light of the event, would you reasonably believe that the intruder would still be in possession of one of your weapons? I say, "Yes"

    4- Did the perpetrator make any "Furtive moves" when re-entering the Army Officer's residence? If he did, the shoot was good. If he didn't and the officer could articulate the 2 facts above, still a good shoot.

    5- In today's world, given the same or similar circumstances, we probably would have done the the same thing.


    HiVelocity in SC
     
  9. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    Good shoot. (He may not have known so at the time...)
     
  10. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    Akodo states: this 'what if' is just silly. A 'friend of the burglar' who also is in the home is considered an accomplice.

    Hi Velocity states:
    4- Did the perpetrator make any "Furtive moves" when re-entering the Army Officer's residence? If he did, the shoot was good. If he didn't and the officer could articulate the 2 facts above, still a good shoot.

    My whole point is that according to the report the subject had not re-entered the home. Can you legally shoot an un-armed man in your backyard ?
     
  11. Heavy Metal Hero

    Heavy Metal Hero Member

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    What good is an online forum if we can't armchair quarterback things? ;)
     
  12. Titan6

    Titan6 member

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    Neutral. Not enough info. With the info presented maybe. He had no idea if the guy had just walked out for a sec and was coming back or not. Reasonable to assume that if your house has been robbed the 1st tresspasser you come upon did it? Maybe.
     
  13. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    Just so folks don't get the wrong idea, I should point out that over the last several months I have taken a lot of flak on sites such as ar15.com for condoning lethal force used by victims against their un-armed muggers. One forum member was actually banned for threatening to "draw down on me if he ever saw me draw down on my un-armed mugger." That is why I have joined this forum.

    I have also advocated removing all weight lifiting gear from prisons with my own 'LESS WEIGHTS/LONGER WAITS' campaign. Some recently released (on early parole) violent felons can bench press 500 pounds and are usually under the influence of meth or crack while kicking in your door at 3 AM. I will not fist fight an individual of this description attempting to assault or mug me, but rather use lethal force to stop the attack. Therefore I want it understood that I am just posing a question here rather than judging the homeowner.
     
  14. Axctal

    Axctal Member

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    My impression was that BG was still INSIDE the house attempting to LEAVE through back door while armed with stoilen weapons
     
  15. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    That is very possible and would make it a good shoot. Very poorly written article.
     
  16. sierrabravo45

    sierrabravo45 Member

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    I think he should have asked him to lie down on the ground and then wait for the cops. This would have done a few things.

    1. Employ lawyers for the next few months debating the case.

    2. Provide jurors a nice salary while they are listening to the lawyers.

    3. Once the "innocent victim" (innocent until proven guilty. They guy could have been the pizza delivery boy walking in to a ransacked house through the back door) was charged. The taxpayers would have to pay for his 3 squares a day, cable TV and education while he was in jail.

    4. Counseling would probably have to be provided also since he went through mental anguish in the robbery. (the robber, not the soldier should be helped).

    I really think he went pursued the wrong direction......:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener:
     
  17. Hobie

    Hobie Member

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    I find that most newspaper articles are poorly written and give only slightly more information than you could pick up from friends around the water cooler. Multiple sources are needed from which to deduce the truth. The key information is that the shooter was not charged.
     
  18. p85

    p85 Member

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    I certainly don't have enough information to say whether this was a good shoot or not. Here in NC, if you were to wait for someone to enter your home before shooting, you cannot shoot unless 1. you cannot retreat any further and 2. you genuinely fear for your life. However, if they are still outside and are attempting to enter without your permission, armed or not, you have the legal right to stop they from entering by lethal force. I know it seems to be backwards, but that is the way it is. Once they are inside, you cannot escalate (sp) the situation. You cannot even hold them for the police as you have no "citizens arrest" power. I would like to see legislation for "castle doctrine" similar to that of other states enacted here.

    Bob
     
  19. Aguila Blanca

    Aguila Blanca Member

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    In most states ... yes.

    The law in most states says that you may employ deadly force in self defense if you fear immediate death or serious bodily harm. Most of these laws do not limit this to within the home, nor to nighttime hours. I think my thought process would be similar to that reported for the Army lad -- I know my guns have been taken, I see a person whom I assume to be the perp approaching my BACK door ... I'm going to assume that he is armed and prepared to do me unwell if not dealt with.

    I vote good shoot. The law does not require that the facts causing your fear be 100 percent correct, the law only requires that you fear for your life.
     
  20. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

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    I believe the fact that he isn't being charged says there's more to the story.

    If a little more info was known, I probably would have shot to.


    The Texas Governor just signed the "Castle Doctrine".:)
     
  21. TheFringe

    TheFringe Member

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    Thank you all for the informed responses. I knew there was a reason I joined this forum !
     
  22. Soybomb

    Soybomb Member

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    If I've learned anything its that whats printed in the newspaper is seldom right. In this case I'm betting the story printed isn't the full and complete story.
     
  23. Warren

    Warren Member

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    In general in these situations I give the benefit of the doubt to the person who DIDN'T initiate the overall situation that lead to the death.

    So regardless of the facts (inside? outside?) of the shooting itself, I'll give a pass to the homeowner because the dead un turned out to be a criminal and the one responsible for this particular theft.

    Though I don't condone shooting someone who has given up. Or going over to his place and shooting him. Or waiting a few days or weeks and then ambushing him. None of those situations are kosher.
     
  24. Don Lu

    Don Lu Member

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    I understand why he shot, and luckily it turned out to be the BG who was hit, But Im not so sure it was a good shot (soley based on the info provided). If you cant Identify the threat as a threat then you may want to hold off on shooting. Depending on his role in Iraq, he may have been used to shooting w/o asking himself some key questions, and I understand that as well. The person shot could very well have been a neighbor who saw some suspicious activity and was coming to check on things as a good samaritan, could have been a meter reader for the gas or electric company. I think the "what ifs" are what make this a questionable shot.
     
  25. F4GIB

    F4GIB Member

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    Sometimes. This time, for example.
     
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