As reported, a Phoenix, Arizona man used his handgun to stop a home invader that was rushing towards him.
Police say that the homeowner returned to his house on the 7500 block of West Weldon on Friday morning to find a burglary in progress. Out of the four intruders, three are said to have fled while a fourth ran at the homeowner, prompting him to fire in self defense, according to news reports. A suspect, reportedly identified as 16-year-old Mario Barcenas, was taken to a hospital where he later died.
There are those who decry self defense shootings when the dead criminals turn to be teenagers, as happened here. To that, I would say a few things. Firstly, a 16 year old male is often near the peak of his physical strength, and can pose quite a threat if violent. This is especially true when, as here, the 16 year old in question is accompanied by accomplices. Secondly, while a 16 year old likely lacks the judgment of a 40 year old, they certainly know right from wrong, and are no longer children. Virtually every 16 year old who commits a burglary does so with the understanding that their actions are illegal and dangerous, and cannot reasonably claim age as an excuse. Thirdly, second guessing a citizen who defends themselves is almost never proper, as discussed in greater detail here. Finally, while it is sad that these young lives are over, just as any loss of life is sad, it is far better that a criminal suffer than his innocent victim.