GIG HARBOR, Wash. - A Pierce County homeowner shot and killed an intoxicated intruder on the 4th of July, according to the Pierce County Sheriff's Department.
Deputies were called around 10:15 p.m. to the home in the 7600 block of Hidden Lane NW in Gig Harbor.
Investigators said the intruder parked his car in the homeowner's yard - leaving his car door open - before breaking a window to the home and letting himself in. The homeowner heard the commotion and called 911. The intruder was heard screaming and yelling, and started to walk up the stairs toward the homeowner who was at the top of the stairs with a gun. The homeowner shot and killed the 48-year-old man in the stairwell of the house.
"The dispatcher could hear yelling from the intruder and then like the sound of a scuffle and then the homeowner had advised that he shot the intruder," said Sgt. Darren Moss, public information officer.
Moss said the homeowner did not know the intruder.
"He broke into someone else’s home and that’s a frightening situation to put those people in. And unfortunately, he lost his life and now these people have to deal with the aftermath of what happened in their home," said Moss.
Detectives believe the man was intoxicated at the time and may have been trying to enter the home of a family member in the neighborhood.
"What’s unfortunate about this case is that the intruder actually has family that lives just a few blocks away. So, we believe he possibly thought he was at one of their homes," said Moss.
People who live in the neighborhood said they never thought something like this would happen in their community.
"That’s scary, especially back in this area where it’s so quiet and peaceful," said one neighbor. "It’s something you don’t really feel is going to happen in the quietness of Gig Harbor. Everybody kind of stays to themselves and we work in our yards and walk our dogs and it’s quiet."
The homeowner was not arrested given the circumstances of the shooting. The investigation is ongoing and no further details have been released.
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