No Charges

Channel Five is reporting that the man who shot Darren Evanovich after he pistol-whipped a 53 year old woman last week won’t be charged:

That word today from the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office.

But the sister of the dead robber faces two counts of Aggravated First Degree Robbery.

Authorities say they believe 20-year-old Octavia Marberry of Minneapolis has possibly been involved as an accomplice in this and two other store parking lot robberies.

Frankly, I’m just a tad stunned.

Even though the case was apparenlty a good enough example of self-defense to keep even the Henco Attorney’s office off the “good samaritan”‘s case.

The reporter for The Five did a signal job of actually getting the facts straight:

According to the criminal complaint, on Thursday, October 20th, a 53-year-old woman was robbed just before 10:00 p.m. outside the Cub Foods on 26th Avenue and struck in the head by a gun held by the robber, 23-year-old Darren Evanovich.

Minneapolis Police say their investigation showed that at least two other people were with him and one of them was Marberry.

After Evanovich took the woman’s purse, all three ran off in a northwest direction, police say.

That’s when a man who witnessed the robbery chased Evanovich.

According to witnesses, the man drove up to the spot where he saw Evanovich going through the victim’s purse and asked him if he wanted to give the purse back.

Witnesses say that’s when it started to turn ugly–Evanovich pointed his gun at the “Good Samaritan,” and moved towards him.

The man in the vehicle pulled out his handgun and shot Evanovich.

Authorities say after they reviewed the circumstances, they determined that the man “acted in self-defense.”

To be honest, I expected Henco Attorney Mike Freeman to try to find some pretext for throwing the book at the shooter.

I’m pleasantly surprised:

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said today in a press release, “While this man is to be commended for helping his fellow citizen in need, a note of caution is appropriate.  We prefer that armed citizens do not chase after criminals.  Too much can go wrong with deadly consequences.”

Nobody who took concealed carry class needs to be told twice.

As my carry teacher, the late Joel Rosenberg, told us over and over again, shooting in self-defense is the second-worst possible outcome.  Your kids growing up without a parent, when you yourself did nothing wrong, is worse.

19 thoughts on “No Charges

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  2. To be honest, I expected Henco Attorney Mike Freeman to try to find some pretext for throwing the book at the shooter.

    I’m not surprised — Freeman is a lib but he’s a realist. He would have lost the case and there was no political benefit to him or his party in pursuing the matter.

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  4. Let’s read the subtext. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman grudginglysaid today
    That’s better.

  5. County Attorney is an elected office. Freeman didn’t have an opponent in his last race, but this is the sort of thing that could guarantee that he would, next time.

  6. The sister has no bail. I suspect they are waiting to indict her for felony murder if her brother.

  7. Re F4GIB’s comment: any of you lawyers know how this works? Can someone be indicted for murder if an accomplice is killed by someone else? Seems cockeyed, but then so much about the law does…

  8. Interesting thought. If someone dies in the commission of a simple crime (like robbery) it is 1st degree murder in most jurisdictions. If an accomplice in the crime dies? I haven’t a clue.

  9. 1. Mitch, the (non) answer to your question hinges on whether a judge/jury believes Marberry “caused the death of” her brother. This is a twist on the typical felony-murder case, but it depends on how the factfinder decides that question.

    2. Jeez, it must be disconcerting when someone like Freeman doesn’t follow the Liberal/Conservative script. But I love the efforts to make the decision fit into your worldview.

  10. Ears,

    1. I figured as much.

    2a. Not so much “disconcerting” as “surprised that the good guy got away without a lengthy legal battel in the metro. See the Treptow case.

    2b. Huh? The decision does fit my worldview; a law-abiding citizen defended himself from a predator, and did (miraculously) not have to defend himself in turn from the state.

  11. “To be honest, I expected Henco Attorney Mike Freeman to try to find some pretext for throwing the book at the shooter.” C’mon Mitch, at least make me work a little bit!!

  12. Ears,

    {shrug}

    Not sure if you’ve followed these sorts of stories for any length of time, Ears, but Hennepin, Ramsey and Anoka counties have reputations for being *very* unfriendly to law-abiding gun owners. They have a traditional policy to “charge the gun”; it usually means that those who would claim self-defense must mount an “affirmative defense” – basically plead guilty, but prove they weren’t a willing participant, they made reasonable efforts to disengage, the were in reasonable fear of death or great bodily harm, and lethal force was reasonable.

    In carry permit class, we were told that if we shot someone in self-defense in Hen/Ram/Anoka/Dakota counties to expect an arrest, permit revocation, indictment and a trial featuring at least $50K in legal bills, if everything went PERFECTLY and our case was airtight. This was not partisan hyperbole – my teacher was a registered DFLer, but more importantly, someone who’d done more research on the subject than perhaps anyone outside the bar.

    I’m not sure what you’re giggling about, Ears. This is a genuine surprise to a lot of us who follow this issue very closely – which, with all due respect, I suspect you do not.

    Work a little bit? Hm. I’m going to suggest working to step outside the preconceptions you seem to have brought to reading this thread.

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