Far be it from us to suggest that a homeowner shouldn’t have the right to defend himself and his family. If you can’t use every means available to you – up to and including deadly force – against an intruder, you might as well be living in the UK. But part of that right is also inextricably wrapped up with the responsibility to use that level of force responsibly. That’s something that appears to have been lost on one San Antonio homeowner . . .
The homeowner, in his 60s, grabbed his handgun around 8 a.m. and took several shots a man he claims was stealing a potted plant and other items from his yard at 708 Shadwell, said Sgt. Chris Benavides, a spokesman for the San Antonio Police Department.
The suspect retreated back to his van where he was shot through the windshield and grazed in the head.
One neighbor found herself in the middle of the gunfire and says at first she didn’t think it was real until she smelled the gunpowder. “He had a stance as if he was Dirty Harry. Like come back here or I’m going to shoot you again,” said Andrea Lebron.
According to the report, the San Antonio homeowner probably won’t be charged. “At this point he is protected because he was trying to prevent theft on his property,” according to Sgt. Chris Benavides. We’ll see if that holds true when the local prosecutor reviews the facts of the case – such as shooting at someone who’s trying to get away.
You’ve read it here a hundred times: when seconds count, the police are only minutes away. But if you glance out your window and see someone loading your favorite ficus into his van, jotting down the license plate number and a quick call to 911 seems preferable to spraying the neighborhood with lead. If the plant pilferer approaches your house or looks like he has other, darker intents, that may well be another story entirely. Just sayin’.