An armed South Carolina man saved his family from a gun-toting masked intruder attempting to commit a violent home invasion.
A homeowner in Moncks Corner, South Carolina, shot and killed 30-year-old Elijah Akeem White Jr. after White broke down the homeowner’s door on Tuesday night. White was carrying a pistol equipped with a laser sight and a rope.
The homeowner’s wife and two young children were home at the time of the attack.
According to a report by Charleston the Post and Courier, Rick Ollic, the Moncks Corner Police Department chief, said the presence of the rope suggests White was going to cause “serious harm.”
“It’s believed that he was going to tie up the residents,” Ollic said. “There was no doubt he was there to do some serious harm to this family.”
White had previously been convicted of burglary, illegal possession of a weapon and prison rioting.
Ollic said White was not alone. The ordeal began after 8 p.m. on Tuesday night, when Juanita Marie English, an accomplice of White’s, knocked on the unsuspecting homeowners’ door posing as a representative of the family’s homeowners association. English asked a female resident at the home questions and then signaled to White to emerge from the vehicle he had been sitting in near the home.
White approached the house wearing gloves and a mask and with a pistol in his hand.
“Seeing a masked gunman approach was terrifying,” Ollic said, according to the Post and Courier. “She was able to shut and lock the door. It got chaotic. She screamed for her husband.”
White soon knocked the door down, but waiting on the other side was the woman’s husband, armed with a weapon of his own. He shot and killed White, and English fled the scene.
English was later picked up by police after being stopped for dangerously driving her vehicle. Police found a fake name badge in the car English allegedly used during the crime. She has been charged with first-degree burglary and criminal conspiracy.
Police say it’s unclear why the home was chosen for the crime.
Berkeley County Coroner Bill Salisbury would later determine the killing of White was a justifiable homicide.
“In Berkeley County, if you kick someone’s door in and you get shot, as long as I’m coroner, that will be justifiable homicide,” said Salisbury, according to the Post and Courier.
According to research compiled by the National Rifle Association, “‘Hot burglaries,’ in which criminals invade homes while home dwellers are present, are much less common in the United States, where many people have guns, than in England, where most people don’t have guns.”
The NRA has also found, “People who use guns to defend against robbery and aggravated assault are less likely to be injured than people who use other means, or no means, of self-defense.”