A homeowner in East Memphis, Tennessee, arrived home around 8 p.m. to find it being ransacked by two armed robbers.
“He picks up his weapons, he turns around and pointed it at me,” the homeowner, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of his safety, told ABC24.
Fortunately for the homeowner, the robber’s handgun malfunctioned. The two gunmen ran into the homeowner’s kitchen. Fearing for his life, the homeowner used the opportunity to retrieve his personal AK-47 rifle from a closet in case the two returned and he had to defend himself.
Things could have ended right then, but the gunmen had other ideas and remained on the homeowner’s patio.
“He was standing right there,” the homeowner said. “He was shooting, aiming at my cousin, so I just let loose, not knowing that I hit both of them.”
This was not the first shooting at the residence, as police investigation turned up pock marks where the home had been shot up less than a year before. Even so, neighbors who have lived for years in this community near Overton High School were shocked to hear gunshots, especially so early in the evening.
“You don’t want it to happen. You really don’t ever want it to be that close to you and your family,” neighbor Charles Harris said.
These two won’t be robbing houses or pulling guns close to anyone’s family any more. Both gunmen, identified as 28-year-old Azell Witherspoon and 17-year-old Demond Robinson, were pronounced dead at the scene.
WATN reports that the homeowner believes the break-in started in retaliation toward his friend who one of the suspects claimed owed him money. Though the homeowner isn’t happy that he had to kill the gunmen, “it was either me or them,” he said.
The homeowner provided police with his home surveillance video to support his claim of self-defense. He was then detained and released. The District Attorney General’s office determined no charges will be filed at this time, but the homeowner’s ordeal may just be beginning.
“You never know how someone else’s family may perceive the situation,” the homeowner told reporters, adding that he would “just have to take it one day at a time.” Until then, because of the possibility of retaliation from the incident, the homeowner plans to move.
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