Homeowner shoots burglary suspect - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Homeowner shoots burglary suspect

By Christian Jennings - bio | email

November 6, 2008

THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - A Thomasville homeowner shot a man he caught breaking into his car early Thursday morning. The suspected thief is in the hospital. The shooter says he felt threatened, so he defended himself.

Investigators walked up and down the driveway where 22-year-old Jonathan Samuel was shot around 1 o'clock this morning.

Clay Campbell lives on the 300 block of Warren Avenue. He told police he was awake when he heard someone outside his house. When he saw Samuel inside his vehicle, he grabbed a handgun.

Campbell says he tried to detain the the thief until police arrived. But when Campbell felt threatened, he shot him once in the buttox.

Neighbors say what happened doesn't surprise them. They say break-ins happen all the time.

"Somebody did steal my lawnmower out of the backyard," says neighbor Jean Sprague.

"We've had stolen a couple lawnmowers, a bicycle, I had probably 2,000 dollars worth of tools stolen out of the back of my truck," says another neighbor John Wise.

Wise and his wife have lived on Warren Avenue for a little over a year, and they already feel unsafe.

"Especially with the holidays coming up I feel like its going to get worse. We're in the process of getting a neighborhood watch group put together," says Wise.

Jean Sprague moved in 8 years ago. She says she understands why her neighbor did what he did.

"I'm sorry that someone got shot. It's a really hard thing to say, but you can't just stand by and let somebody do whatever they want to in your yard or house," says Sprague.

But Campbell tells police it wasn't just his property he was defending. He felt threatened because inside his vehicle were two other firearms. When the thief made a move, he took the shot.

Samuel then fled the scene and made it a block down the road before police caught up with him. He's at Archbold Hospital, and a spokesperson would only say Samuel's condition is stable.

Charges haven't been filed against anyone in this case. Thomasville Police and the GBI are still investigating. They'll present their case to the District Attorney when they finish gathering information.  Feedback

Charges haven't been filed against anyone in this case.

Thomasville Police and the G-B-I are still investigating.

They'll present their case to the District Attorney when they finish gathering information.

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