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Clerk shoots reported beer thief

05:19 PM CDT on Thursday, September 6, 2007

By Carolyn Campbell and Vicente Arenas / 11 News

The clerk followed the suspect to his car. A Heights area store clerk shot and killed a man who allegedly ran out of his store with 18 beers Wednesday night.

The shooting happened at a Conoco in the 600 block of Studewood at White Oak.

The clerk said the man went into the store around 11:45 p.m. and walked out with a 12-pack and a six-pack of beer. The store clerk followed the suspect out to his car.

The suspect allegedly reached for something, and that's when the clerk shot him once in the chest, fearing the man was reaching for a gun.

Two witnesses tried to perform CPR on the suspect, but he died at the scene.

Houston police haven't determined if the suspect had a weapon in his car. The case has been referred to a grand jury.

“You can’t run rampant and just go steal beer. I mean if that guy let him steal beer then what’s next. They steal your car. They steal everything,” said Ary Bolanos who is a customer.

Officials say a clerk was killed at this store several years ago by another man trying to steal a can of beer.

While the murder rate in the Heights is down, burglaries are up nearly 40 percent.

“You’ve gotta be very suspicious and now you’ve got to be very careful in the neighborhood,” said Santa Iturralde. He’s a customer.

The Conoco service station sits on a corner next to a couple of popular bars that have opened up in the last couple of years. The legendary Fitzgerald’s club sits right across the street.

A clerk at the store Thursday said he’s got some really cool customers and knows many of them by name. He even gives some of them credit when they can’t pay for gas or cigarettes.

But he said things have been changing in the neighborhood over the past couple of years. The store was recently broken into, and the cash register was smashed open.

There have been several other robberies and home burglaries in the area; recently, vandals broke out the windows of several business in the area.

The Heights has been in transition for years now.

There are new bars and $400,000 homes, but along with the growth though comes pain.

Just Ask store clerk Tony Vong. “It was kind of quiet for a year or two and then the crime rate started coming up again.”

The same can be said of many Houston neighborhoods.

In the Heights though certain crimes outpace the rest of Houston.

The beauty that attracts so many people here, it seems, also attracts the bad guys.
 
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Re: Clerk Shoots Beer Theif?

Swainsboro, Ga., May 2006, Raco Convenience Store, corner N Coleman and East Main. Customer came into store and selected a 12 pack, approached counter with gun concealed behind beer. Demanded money, owners Mr and Mrs Patel protested they had just purchased store and had little money. Thief fired one shot, passing throug Mr Patel and coming to rest in Mrs Patel. Thief fled with 12 pack. The Patels recovered from their injuries but now keep a handgun behind counter.

Swainsboro Ga., September 4, 2007. Mr Patel (apparently they're all named Patel) owner of North Main convenience store closed his business, put days receipts in bag, and drove home. Two thieves came out of darkness and pistol whipped Mr Patel to ground, stealing bag. Police called, description of van broadcast, subjects apprehended within 24 hours and most of money recovered.

Hell yes! Shoot the low life scum balls. :---
 

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Harley Dude
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I do think that any time you choose to steal from another your run the risk of being injured or shot! Don't want to get shot don't steal!

I also know that most states will not allow you to shoot a thief unless your life is in danger, and you better be able to prove it.
 

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You cant follow a theif out to his car and shoot him a claim self defence, should have called the cops and got a good description of the car and tags too.

On the other hand, there's one less scumbag in the world. If I was sitting on this clerk's jury, I would have a hard time convicting him. My belief is that if more criminals were getting shot by good people, maybe we would have less criminals around. Still, my belief doesnt give me a free pass to be a vigilante.
 

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Harley Dude
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Maser said:
The thief did NOT at anytime engage the store clerk. So why did the clerk engage the suspect?
The act of stealing from the store I guess is the engagement according to the clerk. But we all know that that act does not fit the rules of engagement to respond with a firearm.

It makes you very angry when you are robbed on your watch, even if it is not your store!
 
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I think the clerk was in the right!! not legally of course, but it should be legal. If more of these "people" get gunned down theft and home burglaries will go down fast after the first few years. As well as rape and murder.. not counting the self defense deaths ha but those to wil go down with time after they learn to have respect for other peoples stuff
 

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Iron Maiden
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psychotic_tendencies said:
I think the clerk was in the right!! not legally of course, but it should be legal. If more of these "people" get gunned down theft and home burglaries will go down fast after the first few years. As well as rape and murder.. not counting the self defense deaths ha but those to wil go down with time after they learn to have respect for other peoples stuff

I hate to agree with you, but I do. Good old fashioned punishment. If you steal = cut off your hands. Rape = castration.
There should be stiffer penalties for crime, and less slimy lawyers that defend the creeps.......

Disclaimer: I apologize to any GOOD lawyers :mrgreen:
 

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psychotic_tendencies said:
I think the clerk was in the right!! not legally of course, but it should be legal. If more of these "people" get gunned down theft and home burglaries will go down fast after the first few years. As well as rape and murder.. not counting the self defense deaths ha but those to wil go down with time after they learn to have respect for other peoples stuff
While I don't necessarily agree with that statement, I do understand what you're saying. See, we are NOT living in the 19th century no more where that type of behavior was okay and in 99% of the cases was perfectly legal. I have NO sympathy for thieves because I think they are just as low as murderers and rapists. However, I do believe in doing things legally by the book. The whole old school logic of "shoot first ask questions later" is EXACTLY what the antis are going to be trying to use against us law abiding gun owners and before we know it, it will be even harder for a victim to have a justifiable reason for using a firearm as self-defense.

Now as far as the "If more of these "people" get gunned down theft and home burglaries will go down fast after the first few years" statement goes, I have to disagree with that. All that's going to happen from that is more of these lowlife thieves are going to be doing more armed robberies than unarmed burglaries/shoplifting. I go to convenience stores a lot and I would much rather be at one when a shoplifting takes place rather than a shootout with the thief and store clerk.


I hope I don't come off like I'm defending thieves because I'm NOT. I'm just stating my opinion on the matter.
 

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The RULES are not uniform from town to town or state to state....I live in the Ozarks; here, it is possible to get your butt shot for thievery and no one get charged, why? Because the cops have other things to worry about....it may sound hard hearted, but life is tough...also, a lot depends on who got shot and who did the shooting...
 
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No sir, this is not the 19th century. This is the 21 st century where the low life have the rights and we, the people, have nadda, zip, zilch, zero. The large pendulem is slowly swinging back.
Many states, including GA, have the Castle Doctrine. We no longer have to let the pond scum sucking dogs with the $200 sneakers kill, rob, rape and hurt us.
Do the crime, do the time (if you have any life left to do the time.)

This forum is not going to have a lot of sympathy for the bleeding heart left wing.

I posted earlier about a little 5-2 East Indian who closed his shop and drove home with his days receipts. He was pistol whipped nearly to death by two gangsta's from the 'hood.
Stole his hard earned money. He works from 7 till 11. That's sixteen hours. Go drum up sympathy from Jane Fonda. When the police caught the two low life that robbed and hurt this man they "resisted." They got the HELL beat out of them- just like they beat Mr Patel.
 

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Whompuss, we also have passed the Castle Doctrine in our state. :i:

Depending on where you are in Missouri, if you rob a store or a person with a handgun for instance you are a fleeing felon, and getting shot could be a real possibility. It is going to go to a jury and many juries are reluctant to convict an upstanding citizen for shooting a dirtbag...I've seen it before.
 
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