A Dallas man heard a burglar trying to break into the storage shed behind his home early Thursday morning, so he grabbed his gun and went outside. The ensuing altercation left the homeowner in jail on murder charges, according to The Dallas Morning News.
James Michael Meyer, 72, said he confronted a man who was trying to break open the shed with a pickax, yelling at him to stop and to not come any closer.
The burglar did not listen, instead taking a few steps toward Meyer. So, Meyer fired his handgun at him once, sending the suspect running toward a park behind the home. Meyer said he shot one more time in the direction of the man, "into the night" and then went back to bed without calling the police.
The incident occurred around 5 a.m. As the sun was coming up, Meyer looked from his house toward the park and noticed what he initially thought was a "black bag" in the distance, so he went to investigate. He found a dead body.
Meyer called the police around 7 a.m. and police arrived at the scene to find the body with a bullet wound in the back of the neck and blood that was dry. Investigators didn't find the spent shell casings outside, and Meyer's informed them he had thrown them in the trash.
According to the affidavit, the second shot "into the night" was the one that killed the burglar, and it was fired after "the threat of serious bodily injury against him was over" because the burglar had dropped the pickax and run away.
Meyer's wife reportedly called an attorney for legal advice before Meyer called 911. During the 911 call, police say, Meyer would not answer dispatchers' questions.
Neighbors reported to the police that they heard three gunshots, contradicting Meyer's account that he only shot twice.
Meyer was arrested and charged with murder. He's in Dallas County Jail on $150,000 bail.