Armed Mpls. citizen who said he killed robber attacking woman released
Details are still thin but thought I would put this up for critique and comment by the board.
Article by: , Star Tribune
Updated: October 21, 2011 - 3:13 PM
A man is telling police that he interrupted an armed and violent robbery of a woman near a grocery store in south Minneapolis, chased down the 23-year-old suspect and fatally shot him behind a nearby restaurant during a confrontation.
The shooting occurred about 9:45 p.m. Thursday in the 2800 block of 26th Avenue S., police said Friday. Authorities have yet to release the identities of all those involved.
The shooter, who told officers that he has a permit to carry a firearm, was detained by police for questioning and then released, Sgt. William Palmer late Friday morning.
"My understanding is that the [shooter] does" indeed have the proper gun permit, Palmer said. "I'm sure the investigators will check that."
Given that a death is involved, Palmer said he expects that a grand jury will review the circumstances and rule on whether a crime may have been committed.
When it comes to armed citizens intervening in unfolding crimes, the sergeant said "that's really a personal decision."
At the time citizens get their permit to carry a gun, "they are told what the limits are, what their liabilities are and what their authority is or is not.
"They need to evaluate the situation like [police] would," he added. "The permit is designed for self-defense."
According to police:
A caller to 911 said a woman had just been robbed at gunpoint of her purse and pistol-whipped in the head in the parking lot of the Cub Foods in the 2800 block of 26th Avenue S.
Information from a second 911 call indicated that a man had been shot behind the Super Grand Buffett in the same block. Officers and emergency medical personnel responded and found the mortally wounded man.
Officers were approached by another man outside the grocery store who said he witnessed the robbery and assault, chased the suspect to behind the restaurant and shot him during a confrontation. The man then directed officers to the weapon.
The robbery victim, 53, suffered a cut to the head in an injury that police described as not serious.
Officers located another handgun believed to belong to the suspect near where the shooting occurred.
Andrew Rothman, a Twin Cities firearms trainer and vice president of the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance, said Friday afternoon that if the events unfolded as the armed citizen described, "the permit holder acted appropriately. Chasing the mugger to recover the purse or to effect a citizen's arrest is permitted by law."
And, Rothman continued, if the suspect "then escalated by pointing and/or shooting at the good Samaritan, the good Samaritan would have been completely justified in shooting."
Police are asking that anyone with information to call investigators 612-692-TIPS (8477).