Letter: Crime victims in tough spot

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In a very recent incident in Gilroy, it appears that the suspect shot and killed the owner of the car, as the suspect was being confronted during an attempt to steal the car.

I have had many people ask, “Well, what should we do?”  

The correct response is to call 911 to report the crime in progress. Notice as much detail as possible, get pictures/video if available, while remaining safe, and report all the details as soon as possible.

However…

Human nature is to attempt to stop the crime, as it feels like a personal attack: “Hey, that’s my car. I need it to get to work, take my kids to school, I need it to make my income, etc.”

As this is a “non-violent” crime being committed, any attempt to detain the suspect, could result in the suspect charging the victim, with assault/battery should things progress to violence, even though the law states that “reasonable force” may be used to detain a suspect that has been placed under “citizen’s arrest.” 

What a mess…especially with the vehicle break-ins, catalytic converter thefts, etc. that are plaguing our area. All are mostly insurance claims and annoyance to the victims, yet something has to be done.

Mike Katz

Morgan Hill

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