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Robber shot during Omaha Walgreen's robbery justified

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  • Robber shot during Omaha Walgreen's robbery justified

    http://omaha.com/article/20100428/NE...orce-justified

    Police officers investigate after Monday night's shooting at the Walgreens drugstore at 6101 Northwest Radial. When two robbers entered the store, a 32-year-old customer shot one of them to death. He caught the other one in the store and held him for police.


    CHRIS MACHIAN/THE WORLD-HERALD

    Published Wednesday April 28, 2010

    Attorney: Deadly force justified
    By Leia Mendoza
    WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER
    A 32-year-old Omaha man planned only to pick up a prescription and buy ice cream when he went to his local Walgreens in the Benson neighborhood.

    Instead, Harry J. McCullough III shot a would-be-robber, 18-year-old Marquail Thomas, to death.

    Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine said Tuesday afternoon that McCullough's use of deadly force was “appropriate and justified” and that he would not be charged in the slaying.

    “There's no question that he had the right to defend himself and protect the lives of the others in the store,” Kleine said.

    Nebraska law allows an individual to use force when his life or another person's life is threatened.

    However, McCullough was ticketed by police for carrying a concealed weapon, a misdemeanor.

    He had a permit to carry a loaded handgun in plain view for example, in a holster but he did not have a concealed weapons permit, said Omaha Police Officer Jacob Bettin.

    McCullough pulled his handgun from the waistband of his pants before he shot Thomas, authorities said.

    Kleine said civilians normally shouldn't put their lives at risk to prevent a crime. However, “if someone feels threatened,” he said, “they have the right to defend themselves.”

    No one else in the store was injured.

    Mark Bohaty, a firearms instructor in Bruno, Neb., said he didn't know the details of what happened in the Walgreens store.

    Bohaty said he teaches students that using lethal force cannot be a gun carrier's first option when threatened.

    “It is truly a last-resort type of thing,” he said. “The threat needs to be real, immediate, and they must be convinced that if they don't use deadly force, they are going to suffer critical injury or death as a result of the threat against them” or against a family member or a stranger.

    Bohaty said people must use their judgment on whether lethal force is appropriate.

    “There's no pat answer,” he said.

    Police said two masked men entered the Walgreens at 6101 Northwest Radial shortly before 9 p.m. Monday.

    McCullough declined a request for an interview when contacted by The World-Herald o Wednesday.

    He had just made his purchase and was placing his credit card back into his wallet, said his lawyer, James Martin Davis.

    One of the robbers, identified as Thomas, pointed a short shotgun in the direction of the cash register, where several customers were standing in line and told them not to move.

    Davis said his client was armed with a .40-caliber pistol and fired after Thomas put the shotgun against the back of a woman using the ATM near the store entrance.

    Davis said McCullough described Thomas' weapon as a Remington 870 sawed-off shotgun that holds five rounds. Kleine said the shotgun was not loaded.

    Thomas dropped the shotgun and fled from the store, but he collapsed outside.

    The second man, 17-year-old Angelo Douglas, scurried to the back of the store. McCullough chased him down, dragged him to the front of the store at gunpoint and held him until police arrived, Davis said.

    Police were still looking for a getaway driver.

    Robert Elfinger, a spokesman for Walgreens, said the store is cooperating with police and declined to comment further. The store reopened at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

    Davis said McCullough has held several security jobs, which was why he frequently carries his weapon.

    McCullough worked in security at the College of Saint Mary from April to October in 2008, a human resources employee at the college said. He currently is employed by the Nebraska Medical Center, Davis said, but not as a security officer.

    McCullough was convicted of carrying a concealed weapon in 1997. Davis said that case involved a knife. He was convicted of driving under the influence in Washington County in 2006.

    Douglas was charged Wednesday with attempted robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery and weapon use.

    If convicted, Douglas would face up to 120 years in prison — 20 years on the attempted robbery, and 50 each on the conspiracy and weapons charges.

    Kleine said he charged Douglas with the weapons count because, authorities allege, he took part in a crime in which a gun was used. He is being held at the Douglas County Youth Center.

    Douglas has no serious criminal record, other than misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct and obstruction of law. Those charges were transferred to juvenile court in March.

    Thomas was convicted earlier this month in Douglas County Court of obstructing the law and served three days in jail. He also was convicted of possessing an ounce or less of marijuana in Douglas County in December.

    It was almost exactly a year ago April 29, 2009 that Thomas was shot when two males approached a crowd near 21st and Evans Street and opened fire.

    World-Herald staff writers Todd Cooper, Jason Kuiper and Juan Perez Jr. contributed to this report.

    Contact the writer:

    444-1336, [email protected]
    Some people were just dropped on their heads as children more than the rest of us!

  • #2
    Yay Good Guys!!!
    "I don't go on "I'maworthlesscumdumpster.com" and post negative **** about cum dumpsters."
    The Tick

    "Are you referring to the secret headquarters of a fictional crime fighter or penal complex slang for a-$$hole, anus or rectum?"
    sanitizer

    "and we all know you are a poser and a p*ssy.... "
    Bearcat357 to Dinner Portion/buck8/long relief

    Comment


    • #3
      Did you guys read some of the comments at the end of the article. Where do they find these milk toast cry in your beer types that are crying a river for those useless thugs?!?!?!?! MY GOD they even think that McCullough should be charged!!!!!!! I hope the next armed robbery involves them so they can "talk" to the thug about his hard upbringing and how we should do a little more for him. GIVE ME A BREAK!!!!

      Comment


      • #4
        I can't believe they gave him a ticket for no CCW.

        They should be giving him a Medal.
        N.Y.P.D. SSA
        Exam: 0146
        Passed:91.xxx
        List: 6xx

        Comment


        • #5
          Always carry, all the time...
          -"If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my children will have peace." - Thomas Paine

          Comment


          • #6
            Anyone else notice that he was cleared in the "slaying" of this pice of trash thug?

            Slaying...really?

            Comment


            • #7
              Two less slugs in this world....good job to the citizen and I sure as hell would not have cited him.
              Moooooooooooo, I'm a goat

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by TX_Loudmouth View Post
                Anyone else notice that he was cleared in the "slaying" of this pice of trash thug?

                Slaying...really?
                I noticed that as well and it bothered me, news writers are retards.
                Originally Posted by VegasMetro
                maybe it’s me but I think a six pack and midget porn makes for good times?????

                Comment


                • #9
                  Oh hell, the news folks often refer to the backstop in an incident like this as the "victim"....I'm quite sure if somebody about to be raped splits the rapists junk with a box cutter they will not refer to the split up dude as a "victim"
                  Just pay your dues, and be quiet :-)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The guy that was killed mom was on TV tonight and she has "For given" him for killing her son. However she is wondering why he was shot so many times and why people are calling him a hero.
                    Some people were just dropped on their heads as children more than the rest of us!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I can only hope that one day these dispicable reactions to a clear victory to all law abiding citzens is viewed as such.

                      great job!!!!
                      sigpic

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Sackett View Post
                        Did you guys read some of the comments at the end of the article. Where do they find these milk toast cry in your beer types that are crying a river for those useless thugs?!?!?!?! MY GOD they even think that McCullough should be charged!!!!!!! I hope the next armed robbery involves them so they can "talk" to the thug about his hard upbringing and how we should do a little more for him. GIVE ME A BREAK!!!!
                        It's Omaha, they think everyone west of them are a bunch of unwashed, knuckle dragging, cavemen and shouldn't be allowed to speak because Omaha in general know's what's best for the entire state. Hence Ernie Chambers.
                        Sometimes, doing the right thing means p***ing off the bosses.

                        "And shepherds we shall be, for thee my lord for thee."

                        Originally posted by dontknowwhy
                        I still think troopers and deputies who work in the middle of no where with essentially no back up are the 'men among men' of the LEO world.
                        Originally posted by weinerdog2000
                        as far as your social experiment, if we cant film you then you cant film us, we will arrest you for obstruction of our freedom.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Local NE firearms owners forum is taking a collection to help defer costs to defend himself against the concealed carry charges, also to replace his carry gun which was taken at the scene.

                          My biggest concern would be that local youths would feel it a badge of honor to retaliate against him.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I like the prosecutor's comments- "he had the right to defend himself"
                            oh yeah, if thats the case, why was he charged with carrying?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dc8driver View Post
                              I like the prosecutor's comments- "he had the right to defend himself"
                              oh yeah, if thats the case, why was he charged with carrying?

                              Several years ago, there was a single mom in Washington DC who used a firearm to protect herself from a home invader. She shot him when he broke into her house and sought to do harm to the lady and her children.

                              She was not charged with 'neutralizing' the bad guy and the shooting was justifiable - but the police confiscated her firearm and she was charged with possessing an "illegal" gun (virtually any gun is/was illegal in the District).


                              Kind of weird when you are said to have a right to self-defense, but the authorities do everything possible to remove the tool you need to be able to defend yourself. Ack!

                              The comments above reflect my personal opinion as a private citizen, ordinary motorist and all-around good guy.

                              The aforementioned advice should not be construed to represent any type of professional opinion, legal counsel or other type of instruction with regard to traffic laws, judicial proceedings or official agency policy.

                              ------------------------------------------------

                              "Ignorance on fire is hotter than knowledge on ice."

                              Comment

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