Don’t Ever Say That California Cities Don’t Enforce the Law

Law and order in California? Believe it. Oakland police arrested a man on suspicion of murder. The district attorney is contemplating charges, and police are investigating.

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It heartens the heart to hear of such glorious exploits of California law enforcement. And here we’ve been led to believe there’s no such thing as “law and order” in the Golden State.

The man that police arrested is the 77-year-old homeowner who shot and killed a guy who tried to break into his house and rob him. How do we know he was trying to break in and rob him? The crook was carrying a crowbar, and somehow, I don’t think he was there to collect for the Salvation Army.

Beyond that, the only eyewitnesses were a woman and a man who were riding in a stolen Infiniti with the crook with a crowbar when they pulled up to the man’s house and got out of the car.  

According to court documents, when police got to the homeowner’s home, they found the 77-year-old man pointing a stolen revolver at the female. 

KTVU:

That woman told police the homeowner had shot her friend. Oakland firefighters and paramedics tried to save the suspect, but he died at the scene. He has not been identified.

Police said the third suspect was found at the scene with a replica gun and arrested on suspicion of burglary.

No charges have been filed against the homeowner, although he was arrested. The case is under review by the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office.

Prosecutors have until Thursday to determine whether to charge the homeowner, who declined to speak with investigators.

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The homeowner chose to exercise his right to keep his mouth shut. This cost him.

“Absent any sort of statement, if ‘A’ shoots ‘B’ without an explanation, we can only go with what we have,” Oakland police Acting Deputy Chief Frederick Shavies said during a press conference Wednesday afternoon. “All we know is an individual lost his life.”

Clang. Clang. Jail for you, sir.

California’s “Castle Doctrine” is different than many states. 

 “A homeowner has a right to use deadly force if their home is being entered by someone that is a threat to them,” said Steven Clark, a Bay Area attorney and legal analyst. “While that power is not absolute,” he added, it is nevertheless “a much different standard than what would appear in the community if you’re in a park or somewhere else.”

Is a guy carrying a crowbar entering your home a “threat”? It’s up to the DA to decide that. In some cases, the homeowner is supposed to meet the intruder with a “proportional response.” The point is that the law is open to interpretation.

The Mercury News:

Clark said numerous other factors may be at play, including whether the burglar was inside the house or not, and whether he was fleeing at the time of the shooting. Shavies on Wednesday said investigators were still awaiting autopsy results to determine where the man had been shot

“These are very fact-specific investigations,” Clark said.

On Tuesday afternoon, a wooden gate outside the house was broken off its hinges and resting on a nearby fence. Inside the property line, a concrete sidewalk could be seen covered in what appeared to be pools of dried blood, all roughly 10 feet from a door to the house. A couple of plastic medical gloves lay strewn on the ground.

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Most ordinary people with half a brain would agree that if you even approach my home with the intent to enter it holding a weapon of any kind, I am not going to run to the library and look up whether it’s legal to use any means necessary to stop you.

Thus endeth the lesson.

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