Armed Homeowner Shoots, Kills Burglar While On Dramatic 911 Call

Whitney Tipton on May 2, 2019

A Seattle homeowner killed an intruder last week during a tense call with 911, according to audio released Wednesday.

The 12-minute call started around 2:40 am on May 22 when the homeowner contacted 911 after hearing a window break in his home in the White Center neighborhood of Seattleaccording to ABC7, who also obtained the 911 audio.

The homeowner can be heard whispering to the 911 operator from inside his closet as burglars rummaged through his home.

The operator asked “Are you armed?”

“Yeah, I have a gun,” the homeowner replied.

After about four minutes, shots rang out on the call as the homeowner fired several rounds at the intruder, who could be heard moaning in the background later.

“I heard shots, what happened?” the operator asked.

“I had to shoot him. He came after me,” said the homeowner.

The unarmed intruder was found dead by police.

“It was definitely nerve-wracking but I think at the end of the day, training kind of kicked in,” said the 911 operator, Zoe Birkbeck in an interview with Kiro radio. After the shooting, she walked the homeowner through unloading his handgun, locking it in the closet away from the wounded intruder, and exiting his home to present himself to police officers.

“You don’t want someone spring out of that house, for the caller’s safety, for the officers’ safety,” said Birkbeck, who was trying to keep the frightened homeowner from running out of the house.

“So in that moment, where that fear and that relief is coming out of the caller and he’s trying to get out of there as fast as he can, in my opinion, to go, ‘Okay, we’re going to do this together,’ it will calm him down, it will slow him down, and it will hopefully eliminate any possible mistakes.”

Police praised Birkbeck, who just joined the 911 operations a few weeks ago, for her calm demeanor during the ordeal, according to KIRO.

The King County Sheriff’s office announced that it will not seek charges against the homeowner, because he acted in self-defense.

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DCwire features investigative reporting syndicated with permission from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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