Nick Embertson

An alleged home invader, Nick Embertson (above) is dead, his unnamed accomplice in the hospital, and homeowner David Allen Pettersen is in jail after a home invasion turned into a shooting in Madelia, Minnesota early Saturday morning.

The homeowner who killed a teenager during an alleged home invasion is in jail on recommended manslaughter charges.

The person shot and killed Saturday morning was Nick Embertson, 19, of Madelia, according to the Watonwan County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff deputies were called to a report of an invasion involving a firearm in Fieldon Township and stopped a suspect vehicle. Embertson and another occupant were taken to the Madelia hospital. Embertson was pronounced dead at the hospital and the other was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Homeowner David Allen Pettersen, 65, is in jail on possible charges of second-degree manslaughter and reckless discharge of a firearm, the Watonwan County Sheriff’s Office announced Sunday evening.

Authorities are not yet identifying the second occupant of the vehicle or providing any details about the shooting.

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The lack of detail provided is disturbing, but the fact that Pettersen (above) has been arrested under suspicion of manslaughter this soon after the shooting strongly suggests to me that he opened fire on the suspects when they were not in his home posing a credible deadly force threat.

Remember, folks, that you cannot generally use deadly force to protect property in most of the nation, that you cannot shoot through doors (as Theodore Wafer found out the hard way), and that you cannot fire on fleeing people.

I’m confident that Mr. Pettersen probably trotted out some version of the “I was in fear for my life” argument as he explained his decision to open fire. That means nothing. That phrase is just empty words, and it doesn’t mean that your fears nor your actions were reasonable nor in the scope of the law.

It doesn’t appear that we lost a future cancer researcher in the death of Nick Embertson, but the alleged drug abuser does not appear to have done anything warranting being shot, nor does his unnamed co-conspirator.

Mr. Pettersen does not appear to have understood the laws regarding the use of deadly force, and ruined three lives, including his own.

If you have a firearm, you’d better put in the time to take a class regarding the defensive use of firearms and make sure that you have a solid grasp of the laws regarding the use of deadly force. It’s depressing to keep having to cover this same sort of story time and time again.