“A vigilant homeowner turned a rifle on two men suspected of setting fires in the Freeburg (IL) area over the past few weeks and held them until authorities arrived.” Turns out that the pair were a couple of serial firebugs who got their jollies by burning barns and other outbuildings on farms southeast of St. Louis. From firehouse.com: “St. Clair County Sheriff’s Capt. Steve Johnson called the two a ‘Beavis and Butt-Head duo’ because of the series of senseless crimes for which they have been charged.” But they picked one farm too many when an unidentified property owner heard a bustle in his hedgerow and became alarmed now. . .

Not wanting to see rings of smoke through the trees, let alone hear the voices of those who stand looking, he grabbed a rifle.

The two suspects were apprehended after they were discovered early Thursday morning outside a rural Freeburg home. The property owner was inside his home around 12:05 a.m. when he noticed flashlights flashing outside of his home. Johnson said the man then grabbed his rifle and was able to apprehend the two suspects at gunpoint. Not having his cell phone with him, the man then walked the two to a neighbor’s house and made one of the suspects ring the doorbell.

No one knows exactly what the two, Bryan Boide and Nicholas Haegele, had in mind, but as you know, sometimes all of our thoughts are misgiven. Ooh, and it makes you wonder. We’re hopeful, though, that now that the pair’s been nabbed, Boide and Haegele will realize that there are two paths you can go by, and in the long run there’s still time to change the road you’re on. Still, it really makes you wonder.


  1. Given that it happened in Illinois, it’s a wonder the homeowner wasn’t arrested for brandishing, assault with a deadly weapon and impersonating a police officer by exercising non-existant arrest powers.

    • Illinois outside of the Chicagostan area is solidly “Red State” in character and in politics. The problem is that Chicago out-populates the rest of the state, so the liberals in Chicagostan keep getting “re-elected” whether the country folks go to the polls or not.Your assessment is correct had this happened in Chicago, but in rural Illinois I doubt he’ll catch any grief. Not to long ago a rural IL county voted to enact and issue its own CCW permits under home rule when the Chicago Machine pulled the plug on concealed carry.

    • If this happened in an urban area, the homeowner would have been arrested as he was brandishing and needlessly threatening two sweet innocent baby boys.

  2. See, if this had happened in Canada, the headline would have been: “Local lunatic arrested after holding two boys against their will at gunpoint”.

    • Actually something a lot like this did happen in Canada. The homeowner was convicted of keeping his weapon improperly secured.

  3. DZ, 

    Great, clever post. The mental image of “Beavis & Butthead” being walked, shall we say, “Dazed and Confused,” to the neighbor’s house is absolutely classic. Well done, DGUer!

  4. I’ve never understood what possesses people to just destroy someone else’s property for kicks, is it some form of psychopathy? Thankfully neither of them are minors, so they probably won’t get away with a slap on the wrist, provided they have enough evidence to convict.

  5. Has Eric Holder launched an investigation against the homeowner for violating Beavis and Butthead’s civil rights?

    • So we could have winners today of both the “DGUotD” and the newly created “IMotD” which in this case could also be known as the “FLAME DELETED” award!

      (dear WordPress… how many days do I need to wait between postings to avoid the posting too quickly error?)

  6. If I am the neighbor, and 3 guys, 1 with a rifle ring my doorbell after midnight, better believe I’m dialing up and toolin’ up before I answer it.

  7. Caution as always, but, I know my neighbors, if I see one of them herding anyone into my yard at gunpoint, I am going to get my pistol and back him up, while dialing 911 on the cell, or meet him at the door with my pistol, just to reenforce B&B’s assumption they could be shot, and then call 911 on the land line. (Everybody stays outside tho. Never allow anyone inside, if one or both make a break for it, best be out in the open).

    • Keep them in the open and when not moving them; keep them on the ground, face down, spread eagle. Rule four.

  8. My SIL from rural Texas told me to post this for her
    “In Texas (outside of Austin) he could probably have shot them for being on his property at night with arson tools…
    He might have to pay a fine for unlicensed vermin extermination though.”

  9. Too the story was written by a random-word generator.

    I would like to have learned what actually happened.

  10. Cudos to the farmer for exercising his right to protect family and property. Being from rural KY just south of IL so I know about their gun laws. I think the gun laws IL has in place are rediculus and extremely restricting for the average law abiding citizen. As far as the criminals I would have done the same if not worse.

  11. Except for the FOID and lack of ccw, I’m not aware of Illinois gun laws being that strict. It’s no California or new jersey, that’s for sure. There’s no assault weapon ban to speak off (outside of crook county). I mean, it could be better but it could also be way worse.

  12. A good chunk of my family lives in Freeburg. These two mopes are lucky they ran into a merciful person. I know people there who would have ensured there would be no more possibly of any fires harming anyone.

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