“And That’s Just Our Womenfolk!”
Woman opens fire on intruder
A man is wounded as she defends her home with two handguns.
Firing nine rounds from two handguns, a 53-year-old Rancho Cordova woman fended off an intruder Thursday night after he crashed through her sliding glass door.
William Kriske, a 47-year-old parolee, was treated for a gunshot wound to the arm, then taken to jail and arrested on suspicion of burglary and resisting arrest, according to Sacramento County Sheriff’s Sgt. Lou Fatur.
“It was one of those nights. I have a few holes in my glass out front,” Carolyn Lisle said Friday.
“That’s OK, I don’t think he’ll be back,” said Lisle, who emptied one .357 revolver at the intruder before she retrieved a second one and he crashed through another window to flee.
“I was trying to miss my furniture. Priorities, right?” Lisle said.
Lisle, shaken but spirited, recounted her night that started as a quiet evening of TV with three friends and two dogs in her living room.
At about 9 p.m., a noise at the sliding door prompted a male visitor to get up to investigate, but Lisle dashed to a back room to get one of her guns.
“I knew it couldn’t be good,” Lisle said.
When the intruder shattered the glass, Lisle’s three guests fled from the house. Lisle stood her ground and opened fire.
“He was like a mosquito hitting the window. Every time he turned around, poweee,” she said.
Lisle wasn’t sure the intruder was alone so she nervously watched her back as she squeezed off rounds.
When she emptied one gun, she still hadn’t hit him. And he wasn’t gone.
“He was still in the garage, flitting around,” she said.
She went to get another gun — “I like to be prepared,” she said — and waited to see his next move. After tearing up the garage, he finally broke out through a garage window, but he veered toward Lisle’s front door. She fired again, hitting him at least once.
The bleeding intruder ran across the street and tried to hot-wire a motorcycle, but its owners, already armed to come to Lisle’s aid, chased off the would-be thief, she said.
She said one of the men yelled after the retreating burglar: “And that’s just our womenfolk.”
A California Highway Patrol officer stopped the suspect a short distance away and sheriff’s deputies arrested Kriske.
Lisle is still puzzled why someone would break into a well-lit living room with four people and two dogs.
“It was like he was out to hurt someone,” she said.
Fatur said a prowler had been reported moving through neighborhood back yards at about the time Lisle’s house was invaded.
Lisle, who said her guns are registered, will not face criminal charges, Fatur said. California law allows someone to use deadly force whenever a reasonable person believes an intruder poses a threat to kill.
Lisle is the second homeowner in the Sacramento area this year to use deadly force against an intruder.(And it’s only February!) In January, a Sacramento man shot and killed one of two armed intruders who broke into his home. He wasn’t charged.
Studies done to determine whether gun ownership deters crime have only stirred more controversy because of the way statistics are gathered and analyzed, and the way people recall their experiences, said William Vizzard, chair of the criminal justice department at California State University, Sacramento.
“We tend to see ourselves as heroic rather than idiotic,” said Vizzard, who is also a 30-year law enforcement veteran.
Vizzard, who has studied major research and written on gun issues, said two of the most prominent surveys differ dramatically in results, showing anywhere from 150,000 people a year to 2.5 million who claim success in thwarting crime with a gun.
“The answer is, no one can say for sure at the end of the day that the presence of a firearm doesn’t increase your risk of getting injured, nor does it reduce your risk,” he said.
Lisle is pretty sure where she stands: “You need protection in this day and age.”
A retired state worker who once worked as a correctional officer, she did admit that she hadn’t been to a shooting range lately: “After last night, I might go once in a while.”
I’d appreciate it if she went more than once in a while. Nine rounds and one peripheral hit? The odds of one of those misses hitting an innocent are low, but certainly not zero.
This is a surprisingly balanced piece given the source. The quote from Vizzard shows, I think, some bias though. To be really valid he should have said no one can say for sure that the presence of a firearm increases or decreases your risk of getting injured. Read it carefully for the spin he actually put on it: Heads, I win. Tails, you lose.
Consider, though, what might have happened if she had not been armed. A guy willing to break in to a house with three people and two dogs? That could have been very ugly.