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The early bird catches the…burglar? At around 7:00am on July 11, Thomas Kraft walked into his store, Kraft 5 Star Muffler in Des Moines, to discover that a burglar had nearly finished loading up a truck with a selection of his commercial wares.

“There’d been some forced entry into the business and that there was a pickup truck parked in the service bay that had been loaded with property,” said Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek. … “That pickup truck is stolen out of Minnesota. We believe the suspect is also from the Minnesota area.”

Kraft and the burglar, later identified as 37-year-old Amund Benjamin Haarstad (below), had a confrontation before Kraft pulled his gun and fatally shot the intruder. Haarstad had already been convicted of felony-level assault.

Thanks to Iowa’s 2017 Stand Your Ground law, Kraft isn’t currently being charged with any crime.

As Parizek dryly warns prospective criminals: “You never know when you’re going to pick the wrong business and you’re going to encounter the wrong business that’s got your heels dug in. They’re going to protect their property and themselves, and this is the type of thing that may happen.”

A lesson Haarstad learned the hard way.

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  1. Ah yes, going after soft targets for those highly desirable big ticket items….hmmmm, shocks and mufflers?? Stealers gotta steal…whatever they can get their hands on I suppose.

    • Tools. Tools are very expensive and bring a pretty penny, being virtually untraceable. Notice the cars? I bet this owner has an unusual set of mufflers for foreign cars in that shop.

    • If you read the article, it said they had a scuffle before Mr. Kraft pulled his pistol. Without further details, we don’t know how involved that “scuffle” was. Being 63 myself, I wouldn’t want to depend on my physical capabilities to defend against someone 30 years my junior, so if he wouldn’t leave willingly, he would leave the best way I could get him to. If that meant lethal force, so be it. His choice. What’s difficult about that to understand?
      I’m too old & fat to fight.

  2. 🎶thump thump thump… Another one bites the dust…🎶

    I’m sure it’s hotter than an exhaust manifold where he went.

    A stealer’s gotta steal, and this loser done lost.

  3. Good for Mr. Kraft! He saved himself and his goods, and also saved the world a sh!tload of trouble from the thieving mook he shot.

    As an aside, I’m more likely to shoot someone before I’ve had my coffee. I’m a mean b@stard before I’ve tanked up, and just slightly more mellow afterwards.

  4. From one of the news reports: “Parizek said police have no idea why Haarstad was in the area or why he stopped at the business.” I roll my eyes and have to laugh when they say something like this. Here’s a thought: He was in the area to steal shit and the business looked like a good place to do just that.

  5. I’m a local to the area, and WHO radio news stated that an ananomous sister of this guy wants charges pressed for murder. Uh, whatever

    • Yeah, I read an article with some quotes from the dead tweeker’s sister. The stupid doesn’t fall far from the tree in that family.

  6. I´m a neighbor of that Business. just one block. I know Mr Kraft and he is a nice person. I guess he just was protecting his Business. Haarstar had a big criminal record.

  7. Reading the details of his prior assault conviction, it sounds like this guy was a hardcore tweeker (methhead). Be interesting to read the toxicology report from the coroner.

  8. Being an old Veteran and a retired Heavy Equipment Mechanic I agree with a couple of the previous statements, I’m to old, Fat and brittle to go too fisticuffs!
    When the thief took tools he signed his own death warrant! he won the crematorium, when I quit mechanics, my tool box had over $20k tools in it , have since sold it, Name brand tools are quick movers, as a Minnesotan thanks for trash removal!

  9. “Thanks to Iowa’s 2017 Stand Your Ground law, Kraft isn’t currently being charged with any crime.”

    “Thanks to Iowa’s 2017 law reigning in over-zealous prosecutors from inventing an ill-defined “duty to retreat”, the man who survived having his business violated and person assaulted by an out-of-state career opportunist,will not have his life ruined some more in a real-life version of Kafka’s The Trial.

    tl:dr: In Iowa, if you defend yourself, you don’t hav platoons of government schysters second-guessing you for the rest of your life … the life you had to save for yourself in an instant.”

    There, FIFY.

  10. “They’re going to protect their property and themselves, and this is the type of thing that may happen.”

    A lesson Haarstad learned the hard way.

    In general, few lessons of any kind are learned
    by someone engaged in dying.

  11. Mr. Kraft did alright. Sure hope the noise of the gun in that closed space did not cause him any hearing loss.

    Now that would be a tragedy!

  12. Just think of it as the Criminal Early Retirement Plan. Copper plated chest medals presented at 1600 felt per second. Granite plaque to be erected to honor this Dirt Bags life in the cemetery of his sisters choice.
    She should be relieved she won’t have to scrounge up bail money for him anymore.

  13. I got thrown in jail for this last year, lost my job as a federal cop, lost my clearance to get another cop job, been living off food stamps and a little unemployment money. They took all my legal guns, bullets, holsters. I paid $10,000 to get a lawyer to stay out of jail.

    I didn’t even point the gun at the shitbag. I just told him to get out.

  14. Kill or be killed.
    Thanks to Iowa’s 2017 Stand Your Ground law, Kraft isn’t currently being charged with any crime.

  15. The man forfeited his life by making the decision to become a criminal and attack the owner of the business.


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