Homeowner arrested for shooting fleeing burglary suspect in south Tulsa
By John Dobberstein, Editor
Tulsa police said one person has been arrested early Monday after a homeowner shot a burglary suspect near 81st Street and Harvard Avenue.
A caller, David Roland, said he shot a man who he claimed was breaking into his house. When officers arrived they found the shooting victim lying in the grass. The shooting victim had a gunshot wound to the stomach and was taken to the hospital.
Roland later told detectives he was preparing for bed when he heard a car driving down the street. Roland said he assumed it was a burglar and stated no one drives through the neighborhood at that time unless it’s a thief.
Roland said he observed a silver car park around the corner and someone get out. Roland said he walked out of his house with a flashlight, a gun and a cell phone but did not call 911 or the non-emergency number.
Roland said he saw a man, run from his driveway carrying items, and that he yelled at the man to stop, but the man instead ran to his vehicle 50 yards away.
Roland said he chased after the man and when he got to the car, Roland said he pointed his flashlight and his gun at him and told him to show him his hands.
Roland said he stepped in front of the vehicle with his gun still pointed at the man and continued to demand to see his hands. The man got out of the vehicle and stated “You won’t shoot me.”
Roland said he would shoot him, and when the man took a step forward, Roland said he shot him in the stomach. They were approximately 3 feet away from each other.
Detectives at this time believe the shooting victim did not actually steal anything from Roland, but did break into a car next door. Detectives questioned Roland and he was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon.
The shooting victim was taken to the hospital and is expected to recover. The shooting victim is known to police and officers said he will be arrested for burglary when he is released from the hospital.
“We understand that this incident will spark many conversations about the use of firearms in similar situations and what is legally allowed,” TPD said in a statement on Facebook. “The Tulsa Police Department presented the evidence and facts of the case to the Tulsa County District Attorney’s Office and it was determined that Roland discharged his firearm illegally.”
TPD said it can’t provide legal advice on which situation may or may not fall under the state statutes, but this link has more information.