A burglar shot by a homeowner has filed a lawsuit asking for monetary award in damages. Authorities say the homeowner, David McLaughlin, shot the burglar, David A. Bailey, with one of the bulletins hitting him in the left arm as he ran down an alley.
Bailey, now 31, of Albany, broke into the garage on April 21, 2014. McLaughlin, now 33, fired a gun at the intruder he saw fleeing from his property, The Daily Beast reported. Here’s the twist. Bailey pleaded guilty to burglary, and was sentenced to three years home detention.
However, a separate court also found the homeowner guilty of criminal recklessness for shooting Bailey during the attempted break-in. McLaughlin was sentenced to 60 days in jail. So last week, civil attorneys for Bailey filed a lawsuit saying McLaughlin acted recklessly in firing the shots and wants “a monetary award in an amount sufficient to compensate (Bailey for damages).”
While Bailey pleaded guilty to a related burglary charge last year, in the lawsuit he contends he “had not entered (McLaughlin’s) garage” and “never entered the defendant’s garage for the purpose of stealing property.” The suit alleges Bailey was in an alley behind McLaughlin’s home when the homeowner “exited his residence and began firing his weapon into the air in response to a security alarm sound in his garage.”
As the burglar shot by the homeowner fled down an alley, McLaughlin “continued to the public-right-of-way (and off his property) and continued firing his weapon down the dark alley,” the suit says.
The Blaze reported that three shots were fired at Bailey. One narrowly missed the Albany man’s head. Another struck him in the back of the arm and pierced an artery, causing “serious and permanent damage.”
“My client thinks it’s outrageous and I tend to agree. You don’t ordinarily expect someone to burglarize you and turn around and sue you for damages,” the homeowner’s said in a statement.
Very interesting case. Do you think the convicted burglar who was shot by a homeowner should be allowed to recover damages for being shot while doing something illegal? Believe it or not, he might have a case.
“One possibility is for McLaughlin to argue a type of assumption of the risk or plaintiffs’ conduct. However, the court may limit that defense if this response is prohibited by law, as indicated by the criminal conviction,” said George Washington University Professor Jonathan Turley told KTLA.