A 70-year-old man in Sullivan County, Tennessee, was startled at about 2 a.m. when a flashlight beam filled his bedroom window. Then the glass shattered and a burglar tried to enter.

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The homeowner “grabbed a pistol and fired it at the suspect, causing the man to fall back,” said sheriff’s deputies in a press release. The burglar then ran to a nearby vehicle. Deputies caught up with him at a hospital, where he was treated for gunshot wounds.

Leslie Earhart, a spokeswoman for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, said the homeowner acted legally. Charges faced by the 44-year-old suspect, however, would be added to a lengthy rap sheet.

Included in this career criminal’s past, Earhart said, were allegations of theft, aggravated burglary, evading arrest, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, driving with a suspended license and drug possession.

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“It is our opinion that the victim did act within the law due to the fact that he was in fear for his life,” Earhart said.


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