Woman kills armed intruder

Second man sought in home invasion

Resident had gun in dresser

Front door was unlocked

pair demanded valuables


January 29, 2003|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

Anne Arundel County police were investigating yesterday a late-night incident in which a woman fatally shot one of two intruders who she said came in through her unlocked front door on Fox Court in Pasadena.

The 26-year-old woman, who is not being identified because police fear for her safety, told police that the pair confronted her just after midnight yesterday in her bedroom and demanded cash and jewelry. Both were armed, she told police.

"Detectives do not believe this is a random incident," police spokesman Officer Charles Ravenell said of the incident.

When the intruders demanded her valuables, the woman grabbed a .45-caliber semiautomatic handgun from her dresser and shot one of the men several times in the chest, police said.

That man, who is not being identified pending an autopsy, died at the scene, police said. The second man fled. Police were searching for him yesterday evening.

Neighbors said a police helicopter hovered above their homes in the early morning hours. Detectives recovered a second handgun from the house, police said.

The woman was not injured, police said, and has not been charged with any crime. The state's attorney's office will decide whether to file charges against her, Ravenell said.

"Preliminarily, it does appear that her life was in jeopardy and that she was defending it," he said, adding that police advise residents to avoid inflaming a criminal situation if possible.

Police said the 26-year-old was alone at the time of the incident, but neighbors said they believe as many as five people, including her husband, have been living there.

Ravenell would not say why the woman's house was targeted.

Police have been called to the address four times - twice for false burglar alarms and twice for abandoned vehicles - in the three months her family has lived there, police said.

A green Chevrolet Camaro parked in front of the house has Tennessee license tags - neighbors said that's where the family last lived - and a silver Camaro in the driveway is partially covered by a blue tarp and has no rear license plate.

Robin and Tom Lang, who live across the street, said they have seen an increase in vehicle traffic - day and night - on the cul-de-sac of eight duplexes since the woman's family arrived.

"Ever since they moved in, the curtains have been drawn," said Robin Lang, 36, who has lived in the neighborhood since she was a teen-ager. "It seems weird that they do everything all closed up in there."

The Langs also said that the family owns a Shar-Pei dog that occasionally runs unleashed through the neighborhood.

Several neighbors on Fox Court own guns, Robin Lang said, but until yesterday, the most serious crime in the area recently had been teen-agers stealing cans from a soda machine the Langs own.

"It's like this all the time," she said, gesturing to eight young children chasing each other at the end of the cul-de-sac. "We just don't have to worry about safety."

Knowing that police believe the burglary was not random has given the neighbors some comfort, but some said they now are more fearful.

"I called today to get deadbolts for the front door," Tom Lang, 38, said yesterday afternoon, standing in his front yard. "And tonight I'm going to sleep a little closer to my gun."

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