MILLSTADT – A southwestern Illinois man who shot and killed an apparent intruder at his frequently burglarized rural home is unlikely to face charges, sheriff's officials said while cautioning that the investigation is still in progress.
The 72-year-old homeowner shot the alleged intruder Thursday afternoon near Millstadt just southeast of St. Louis, moments after reporting in a 911 call that he heard glass breaking. Sheriff's deputies who responded found the 62-year-old suspect dead in the homeowner's driveway, the Belleville News-Democrat (http://bit.ly/1ss9hy6 ) reported Friday.
St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson said it was the third time the man's house had been burglarized, and that the homeowner was "pretty broke up" about fatally shooting the apparent stranger.
"He didn't know if he hit him or not. When he found out the guy was deceased it broke him up," Watson said. "It's just an unfortunate incident."
State law permits using deadly force against an intruder as long as the intruder violently breaks into the home and the homeowner believes the use of force will prevent an assault or a felony.
Sheriff's Capt. Scott Weymouth says the investigation is still going on, but it's unlikely charges will be filed.
"Everybody says that if somebody comes into my house I'd shoot them. That's not as easy as you think. It's truly not," Watson said. "If you do have to do it, then you have to live with that the rest of your life. This guy is going to have to live with this the rest of his life."
Neither man's name was released.