A homeowner shot two alleged burglars, one of them fatally, in Fair Oaks, California early Wednesday morning and was later arrested when authorities learned about his checkered past.
Jerry Rasmussen, 60, heard a disturbance inside his home sometime after 2 a.m. Rasmussen then, armed with a handgun, found a man inside his home and ultimately shot at him. In return, the intruder fled from the house on foot, according to Sacramento County Sheriff Spokesman Sgt. Jason Ramos. Shortly after, Rasmussen discovered another man inside his home, this time standing in a doorway to a bedroom, so again Rasmussen fired at the intruder, but this time around hitting the man. Rasmussen then left his house in search of help.
The first suspect was later found at a local hospital recovering from a gunshot wound and was promptly arrested. The second suspect, David Anthony Williams, 27, was pronounced dead at the scene when police arrived around 2:30 a.m. He died of a gunshot wound to the chest.
Ramos said deputies who first arrived on the scene said there was evidence of a forced entry.
According to a local report, during the investigation authorities discovered Rasmussen’s criminal history and they arrested and charged him with being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. Both are felony charges. However, he has not been charged with the death of Williams. He is currently being held on a $25,000 bail and his first court appearance is scheduled for Friday.
This is kind of a tough case. On the one hand, Rasmussen violated the law by illegally owning a weapon. On the other hand, though, every person should be able to defend himself in his own home, even if he’s a convicted criminal.
What do our readers think? Is it a pity that the Second Amendment only applies to law-abiding citizens, or do cases like these demonstrate that even former criminals should be able to protect themselves? Should the law make exceptions in cases where the felon clearly only used the gun in self-defense, and not to commit a crime?