Oh, I fully understand that he’s guilty according to the law that was written. And one could argue that there may not be moral justification for having shot at him after he ran outside. But the law leaves little choice unless a DA wants to decide not to prosecute the case. And the flip side of the “no longer a threat” argument is the fact that this young man was just held at gun point, and as his father (a former sheriff’s deputy in that same county) said, “David was in fear for his life. These guys could have come back at any given time for the next six months when he was sleeping in the house.” In the emotion of the moment, one could also argue that he had a moral right to make sure the person that just threatened his life never had the chance to do so again – to him or anyone else. The next time might have resulted in the death of the wrong person.
If the homeowner merely heard noises, grabbed his gun, went downstairs and chased two unarmed perps out of the house, I agree that then firing at them would probably be far more unjustified. But the very worst circumstances existed in this case (absolute threat to life).
As I said, regardless of the legal technicalities, the perps put themselves in a position where they rolled the dice on quite real natural consequences that could have included death. And they were clearly willing to kill the homeowner, by virtue of the fact that they came packing and USED a gun in the commission of the crime. Fortunately, as far as I’m concerned, one of them is no longer in the gene pool. It is illogical to charge the remaining co-perp with murder, if the death of his buddy couldn’t be reasonably foreseen as a natural consequence of their crime. Thus, the charge against the homeowner can’t also make sense if the co-perp was charged (regardless of how the law was crafted).
As Ken Hamblin used to lead each of his stories about such events, ♫ “Another one bites the dust!” ♫ I still wish I’d be able to serve on that jury. Thank goodness for the FIJA.