Southern Ohio home invasion victim defends own life with firearm; Castle Doctrine offers further protections
by Chad D. Baus
Another crime victim in Ohio has been protected from unwarranted legal expense and even prosecution thanks to Ohio's Castle Doctrine law.
Pike Co. Sheriff Richard Henderson told the media that a property owner in Bainbridge interrupted a home invasion in progress this past Monday morning.
From the Highland County Press:
"Two male subjects entered a home and held the homeowner at gunpoint when he came in," Henderson said. "They were stealing his stuff and once they left, as they were leaving the premisses, the homeowner found a gun, and came out onto the front porch. One of the suspects pointed a gun back at him, and (the homeowner) proceeded to shoot at them. He ended up killing one of the suspects."
Henderson said the second suspect fled on foot to a nearby vehicle and left the scene.
The Pike County Sheriff's Office is still looking for that suspect.
..."We don't believe the second suspect to still be in the vicinity," Henderson said. "We are asking if anyone does have any information to contact the Pike County Sheriff's Office, or Crimestoppers."
The sheriff's office can be reached at (740) 947-2111. Crimestoppers can be reached at (740) 773-8477, or toll free at (800) 222-8477.
According to a report by Columbus' NBC affiliate, the homeowner is not expected to face charges:
A Pike County homeowner's decision to shoot a suspected home invader appears to follow Ohio law, according to Pike County Prosecutor Rob Junk.
Junk said he considered the shooting justifiable homicide under Ohio law, which allows homeowners to defend themselves if threatened on their own property.
The suspect later died of his injuries. Pike County Sheriff Richard Henderson has not released the name of the suspect. A second suspect fled the scene on foot and is still at large.
The home invasion and subsequent shooting in the 4000 block of Morgans Fork Road in Bainbridge happened Monday morning.
The homeowner's family declined to comment on the case, but confirmed details previously released by Sheriff Henderson.
[UPDATE February 15: Prosecutor Junk says "most of our Pike County residents have guns. I have several. If somebody broke into my house, threatened me, my wife and my 5-year-old daughter, I would shoot them dead. Most people around here feel the same way."]
Under Ohio's Castle Doctrine law, if someone unlawfully enters an occupied home or temporary habitation, or occupied car, citizens have an initial presumption that they may act in self defense, and will not be second-guessed by the State.
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