In what is being called a “shining example” of why citizens should arm themselves, a South Carolina woman shot and killed an escaped inmate that kicked in her door as she slept around 2:40 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Early Tuesday, two inmates in Pickens County Prison initiated what Sheriff Rick Clark called a “premeditated plan” to escape. Though the investigation is ongoing, The New York Times reports the duo assaulted two corrections officers during the breakout.
Fortunately, Sheriff Clark indicates the deputies were only “sore and a little bruised,” and were recuperating at home with injuries that were not life threatening.
One of the escapees, Timothy Cleveland Dill, was spotted on a road a short distance from the prison some 20 minutes later, CBS News reports. A 9-1-1 call alerted police to his presence, and he was arrested without incident four minutes later.
As Dill was being taken into custody, inmate on the lam Bruce W. McLaughlin Jr., was kicking in the door of an unnamed homeowner.
Once inside the residence, the convict armed himself with a “metal tool used for sharpening knives” that he found in the kitchen, The New York Times reports.
At that point, McLaughlin approached the bedroom door, trapping the homeowner inside, the sheriff said. With no way out, she fired a single round from a handgun she legally owned, striking McLaughlin in the head and killing him.
When deputies arrived on scene, they found McLaughlin still wearing the orange prison jumpsuit, with a single gunshot wound to the head, CBS reports. He was airlifted to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead.
“This lady took the time to get a [concealed weapons permit] and set herself up to protect herself, and not be harmed, raped, or killed,” said Pickens County Sheriff Rick Clark, according to this newson6.com story. He added that the intruder was a “big guy” and that “if she hadn’t had a weapon, there’s no telling what could have happened. But she stopped the crime. She solved the crime for us, and she came out a winner.”
Luckily the homeowner, who wishes to remain anonymous, was not injured in the altercation. This probably isn’t what she’d planned on doing with her firearms training, but it is certain that the decision she made to protect herself is one she will always be grateful for.
“Very few people, even cops, go through situations like that, and she’s kind of a hero to us here today,” Clark said.