A 64-year-old Utah man arrested for shooting at burglars fleeing his property, and subsequently was forced to pay a fine and surrender his gun, is now receiving support from neighbors who see him more as a hero than a criminal.
Layton, Utah, resident Loran Hubbard, 53, finds the whole arrest and reckless endangerment charge of Clare Niederhauser — who in January fired at two burglars who were attempting to break into his property with a crowbar — ridiculous, according to a report on Breitbart.
“He tried to act in a way that is responsible and compassionate and keep his head about him,” she said in the Breitbart report. “We have the right to defend ourselves when we are confronted with a lethal weapon. If a big crowbar isn’t a lethal weapon, I haven’t seen one.”
Other neighbors see Mr. Niederhauser’s arrest as a dangerous precedent that will warn other residents off taking defensive action during threatening situations, Breitbart reports.
Mr. Niederhauser is a legal gun owner with a concealed weapons permit for his .357-caliber handgun, Breitbart reports. He told investigators he only fired at the fleeing burglars as a warning; he actually aimed at the burglars’ tires, he said, according to the Breitbart report. But Layton police said he still broke the law.
“You’re not authorized to shoot a firearm at a car just because you don’t want it to get away, or to scare them, or disable a tire,” said Layton police Lt. Shawn Horton, according to Breitbart.
At court, Mr. Niederhauser agreed to forfeit his .357-caliber gun, take a weapons class and pay a $700 fine, Breitbart reported.
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Cheryl Chumley is a continuous news writer for The Washington Times. Previously, she was part of the start-up team for The Washington Times’ digital aggregation product, Times247. She’s also a 2008-2009 Robert Novak journalism fellow with The Phillips Foundation. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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