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This Is What Happens When an Axe-Wielding Home Intruder Messes With an Armed 92-Year-Old WWII Veteran


"I could have shot him straight in the head, right between the eyes..."

A firearm on the bedside table might be ideal for some owners from a home protection standpoint, but in households with young children, it might not be the most secure location. That's what led two military veterans to develop a a biometric trigger guard. (Photo credit: Shutterstock)

One World War II veteran in San Jacinto, California, fended off an axe-wielding burglar from his home when he pulled out his 1911 .45-caliber handgun to defend himself on Sunday morning.

Joseph Milspaugh, 92, was startled to hear the suspect attempting to break into his home that morning. But as the suspect smashed his way into the house with an axe and then crawled through the opening, Milspaugh reached for his gun and fired one round at the intruder, according to Los Angeles' KNBC-TV.

"I could have shot him straight in the head, right between the eyes, but I didn't want to do that because I'd have been in trouble," Milspaugh told KNBC."It's stupid what he did. Being a Sunday, he assumed that people would be going shopping or going to church and no one would be home, that it would be a good time to break in."

The Riverside County Sheriff's Department corroborated Milspaugh's account of the incident.

“As the homeowner approached the door, he suddenly saw an exterior glass window of the home shatter, followed by the suspect attempting to crawl into his home through the window,” the Sheriff’s Department said in a statement, the Los Angeles Times noted.

Milspaugh's shot left a gaping hole in the wall, and although he had a clear shot of the suspect, Milspaugh decided to scare him off, instead.

"I let off a shot and he took off,” Milspaugh said with a laugh, according to the Los Angeles Times. “He left his ax. He left his hat and everything else after that.”

The police are still investigating the attempted burglary and have yet to name any suspects.

Follow Kathryn Blackhurst (@kablackhurst) on Twitter

Front-page image via Shutterstock

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