Three not-so-wise men picked the wrong suburban Houston home to invade in the early morning hours of December 23rd and paid the ultimate price for their crime.
Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez says a resident saw the three men in dark clothing approach the home before hiding, but when the intruders gained entry, they were met by another resident who was armed with a shotgun and fired in self-defense.
“I want to just warn people that if it turns out that you’re breaking into somebody’s home, regardless of the circumstances, that eventually you’re gonna end up dead or you’re gonna end up in jail,” Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said.
In this case, the three suspects won’t be going to jail. The homeowner who shot and killed the intruders was also shot by one of them, and at last report was in serious condition at a Houston-area hospital.
According to KHOU-TV, police are still investigating, but authorities believe they may have had an accomplice who got away.
Deputies said it’s not yet clear why the home was targeted. It also was not known if the suspects forced their way into the home or if the property was unlocked.
All of the suspects killed appear to be in their early twenties, the sheriff said. Their identities have not been released.
Neighbors in the mobile home community in Channelview, Texas told KHOU that their neighborhood is generally a quiet place, and police haven’t said if the home was specifically targeted by the home invaders, or if they appear to have chosen their target at random.
This isn’t the only home invasion thwarted by armed residents in recent days. In Broward County, Florida a homeowner shot and killed a masked intruder over the weekend.
Officers responded to the home in the 4400 block of Northwest 16th Street after a 911 call about 12:45 a.m. They found a dead man and a weapon.
“There was a masked gunman on the floor, deceased,” said Lt. Michael Santiago, spokesman for Lauderhill police.
The homeowner fired a few rounds from his gun “out of his own fear and protection,” Santiago said. “After he got into the firefight inside his house, he fled the scene to contact police.”
On Sunday, a couple in rural Manistee County, Michigan fought back against a home invader armed with a knife.
MSP said a 29-year-old Copemish man, identified as Nathan Reed, forced his way into a house while brandishing a knife when a man and woman were inside.
Police said Reed died at the scene from gunshot injuries.
The woman was treated for a minor head injury at the scene and was released while the man was uninjured.
Michigan State Police say there doesn’t appear to be any connection between Reed and the homeowners, and they’re not sure why the couple were targeted by the now-deceased suspect.
The one commonality in all of these home invasions is that the homeowners were prepared and able to protect themselves, even when the odds were stacked against them, because they had a firearm. All three of these home invasions could and likely would have had very different outcomes if the residents had been unarmed.