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Mom Shoots Intruder Dead in Legal Defense of Property

sign up for the momlogic newsletter Tweet This Chandler, Okla. -- A woman's shotgun blast that felled an intruder in Lincoln County was a justified act, and just as an emergency dispatcher told the woman before she squeezed the trigger, firing was her best option under the circumstances, the district attorney said Tuesday.

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The intruder's motivations for breaking into her house may remain unclear, but the action taken to stop him was a clear exercise of a homeowner's rights, District Attorney Richard Smothermon said.

Smothermon issued a ruling Tuesday that Donna Jackson had the legal authority to shoot and kill Billy Dean Riley about 12:40 a.m. Friday. Smothermon said he has declined to file any criminal charge against her.

Jackson, 56, was standing in her home south of Cushing on Friday with a shotgun when Riley, 53, used a patio table to smash through a glass patio door, Smothermon said. She opened fire and the shooting was recorded as the 911 dispatcher talked her through it.

The dispatcher had told her, "you can defend your property."

Smothermon ruled the shooting is justified under the state's "stand-your-ground" law, which allows a person to shoot an intruder in a home. Riley was lying dead on the back patio, with his feet inside the door threshold, by the time deputies arrived.

Riley had stepped across the back patio threshold and into the kitchen, said Lincoln County Sheriff Chuck Mangion.

In a trembling voice, Jackson on Tuesday said she did not want to comment.

"I'm not willing to talk about this. Please do me a favor and think of that other family," Jackson said.

Mangion said Riley was driving nearby with his sister when he drove off the roadway and got stuck.

"His motivations are unclear from this investigation," Mangion said. "He went over a fence with a locked gate and he had to fight off a dog once he got in the yard, so I doubt he was looking for help," Mangion said. "I doubt that (getting help) was his motivation."

Patricia Totty, Riley's sister, was passed out in the car in an apparent overdose of narcotics and alcohol, Mangion said. She has since been released from the hospital. She is from Siloam Springs, Ark.

Riley, who can be heard in the 911 call screaming at Jackson before she shoots, was hit in the chest and was dead at the scene.

He had several convictions of driving under the influence of alcohol as well as a possession of marijuana conviction.

Jackson's son is Absentee Shawnee Tribal Police Chief Brad Jackson.

Her son said he stands by his mother's request not to comment on the shooting details.

"I'm glad my mother is safe and she made it through this OK," Brad Jackson said. "My heart goes out to the gentleman's family and to everyone involved."

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1 comments so far | Post a comment now
ashley December 10, 2009, 5:16 AM

I live in Oklahoma and I absolutely agree with this law. We had someone break in a few years ago. my son and I weren’t home but my husband was in the bathroom and called 911. When the police arrived he was walking out the front door with our dvd player and some speakers. We don’t own a gun but if I had to use force to protect my family I wouldn’t hesitate.

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