Cops: 2 killings look like self-defense
UA student grabs his handgun, shoots intruders and calls police
By Alexis Huicochea
arizona daily star
Tucson, Arizona | Published: 10.17.2008
Evidence in the fatal shooting of two intruders by a University of Arizona student appears to be consistent with his account that he was defending himself, police said.
The 23-year-old student shot and killed Shontel R. Early, 30, and Wesley O. Fenstermacher, 29, after the two men barged into his home early Thursday morning, said Sgt. Fabian Pacheco, a Tucson Police Department spokesman.
At least one of the intruders had a gun. The incident occurred shortly after 12:30 a.m., Pacheco said.
The police spokesman gave this account:
The student was home alone in a guest house in the 800 block of East Adams Street, near North Euclid Avenue and East Speedway.
There was a knock at the door, and one of the men asked for someone who did not live there.
The student looked past the man he was speaking with and saw another man, who had his face covered and had a gun.
The student retreated into his home and grabbed his own handgun, but the men made their way in.
The student fired, then called police to report the shooting. When officers arrived, they found the two men dead inside just past the doorway.
The student was questioned and is cooperating with police. His name was not released.
There is no indication that the student is or has been involved in any criminal activity, police said.
Pacheco could not say what the men were looking for or if they had possibly intended to go to a different house.
The case will be presented to the Pima County Attorney's Office for a determination on whether the shootings were justified, Pacheco said.
Neighbors were alarmed by the events.
Ali Adelmann, a UA sophomore, just moved into the neighborhood this semester. "It really worries me," the Phoenix resident said. "All we can do is keep our doors and windows locked."
Jenny Wise also moved into the neighborhood in August. The 19-year-old sophomore said she wasn't home at the time of the shootings. She had gone to a party, and when she arrived home around 2 a.m. she found her street taped off and flooded with police.
"It's really the scariest thing," Wise said.
"I've lived a sheltered life. This seems like a nice little neighborhood. I don't know what I would've done if two guys tried to get into my house," Wise said.
● Star reporter Jamar Younger contributed to this report. ● Contact reporter Alexis Huicochea at 573-4242 or firstname.lastname@example.org