Another one of these.
So let me get this straight: guy gets his place burglarized TWICE IN ONE DAY. He catches the guy in the act the second time and, in the process, kills the guy and the police are debating whether to charge the burglary victim?
This is bullshit.
The article says:
University of Maryland law professor David Gray said prosecutors must weigh
whether Pontolillo thought he was in danger or became the aggressor. If he
thought he might be severely harmed, then he was within his rights to protect
himself, Gray said. "It doesn't matter if he used a gun, a sword or a frying
How about the right to defend your property? I mean, I'm big on that myself, but I thought they were really big on that in the States. I thought you could shoot trespassers down there.
A friend of mine recently had his place broken into in the middle of the night. The burglars(s) clearly did not realize he was home, asleep in the basement. My friend (wisely) escaped out the side door and ran to a neighbour's to call police.
Now, let's imagine that my friend had a kid. Let's imagine that the kid is asleep in another room and that my friend cannot escape with the child unnoticed. Can he confront the burglar with a weapon then? (the fact that the burglar dies from their wounds should never be a consideration - you either believe in defending something with force or you don't - you can't always control the outcome of using that force)
You can bet your ass that I'd be standing there with my samurai sword or Ginsu knife or rocket launcher. Whatever I could get my hands on.
Honestly: fuck the burglar.
What? The guy was supposed to let the guy just walk off with his stuff? No? Then how the hell was he supposed to stop him? By threatening him with force? What if he had to actually USE that force to stop the guy? Is that ok? He had a SWORD. How many different ways are there to use a fucking sword?!
And, besides, does he really have to give the guy the opportunity to surrender before using the force to incapacitate the burglar? I mean, isn't losing the element of surprise just increasing the odds the burglar will do you harm? Just because the guy hasn't seen you yet doesn't mean you aren't in danger. This guy could have run the sword through the burglar's back and I still wouldn't have a problem with it.
Bottom line: the burglar isn't the victim. You break into someone's house, you take your chances.
John Pontolillo shouldn't get arrested, he should get a pat on the back.