A Pennsylvania woman who shot a man after he broke into her home last month says the suspect had been harassing her for approximately 18-months, and now he’s facing felony aggravated assault, burglary and theft charges in connection with the attack on May 11th.
Police in Johnstown say 28-year old Terrell Dykes showed up at the Oakhurst Homes apartment complex last month intent on doing harm to the woman, alleging that he not only kicked in the front door of her home, but began assaulting her once inside.
The woman added that prior to Dykes breaking into her home, she had grabbed her registered 9mm pistol and hid it in her waistband, according to the complaint.
When the woman attempted to call 911, police say Dykes took the phone and smashed it, and then began stomping on her and punching her in the face.
Police add that when Dykes went to close the door to the home, so he could “assault her without interruption,” that a shot was fired.
The woman reportedly told police that she only meant to fire a warning shot at Dykes, and didn’t even realize that she had hit him, the complaint notes.
Firing a “warning shot” is a bad idea, particularly when you’re already being attacked. As it turns out, Dykes wasn’t dropped by the shot to the neck. Instead, he turned and attacked the woman again.
Police say a struggle for the gun then ensued and that the woman managed to remove the magazine from the gun and slide it under her stove.
Police add that Dykes eventually got control of the gun and struck the woman in the head with it, and that he then attempted to shoot her but the gun never went off.
Authorities say Dykes then fled the home with the gun and the woman’s phone, which was located in a nearby dumpster, but noted that the gun was never found.
Dykes is now behind bars on $250,000 bond and facing felony charges, while the victim in this case isn’t facing any charges at all. Thankfully, it sounds like she’ll recover from the injuries she allegedly received at Dykes’ hands, and if Dykes is convicted on all charges he could be going away for 20 years. Chances are, however, that Dykes will be offered a plea bargain on lesser charges, and if he takes the deal, he’ll be looking at far less than the maximum sentence.
Hopefully when Dykes is released from jail or prison, he’s learned well enough to leave his intended victim alone. If not, I can only hope that she’s learned that if she has to use her firearm to protect her life from imminent death or great bodily harm, she shouldn’t fire a warning shot. “I’m armed and I will defend my life” is all the warning her attacker should get.