Homeowner Wrestles Intruder For Gun Before Fatal Gunfight 

in Authors, Defensive Use of Firearms, Home Defense, Kimber Pearce, This Week
Reporters showed at the scene of the fatal shooting the day after it occurred. (Photo: Fox 59)

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Earlier this month, an Indianapolis homeowner wrestled a gun from an armed intruder and fatally shot the suspect.

The homeowner had just arrived home from grocery shopping when the incident began.

According to WRTV, the homeowner, Brent Smith, saw the intruder pull on a ski mask. He had no time to react before being hit in the head with the intruder’s gun.

“He hit me in the head,” Smith said. “I yelled out ‘he is robbing me!’ thinking my neighbors would hear me.”

According to Fox 59, Smith fought back, wrestling his attacker for the gun. During the fight, the two smashed into a glass table.

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“It was like a movie,” Smith said. “Me and him wrestling over the gun.”

According to Fox 59, Smith “shot the intruder with the suspect’s own gun.”

Scary Encounter Turns Fatal

The suspect, 22-year-old Damon Swanigan Jr, was in the doorway of the home when the bullet hit him with a fatal shot. 

“At this time,” Smith said, “I started hearing what felt like thousands of shots.”

Using first the intruder’s gun and then his own, Smith exchanged gunfire with suspects outside.

“I didn’t even think them or me,” Smith said. “I was just basically trying to survive myself man.”

Eventually, the suspects on the street drove away, leaving the home with broken glass from doors and car windows. 

Smith explained he was frustrated with the behavior of the suspects.

“The first thing I noticed was the kid had on brand new Jordans,” Smith said. “You’re trying to rob me but you got brand new Jordans on man? I just don’t get it.”

A Good State For It

Police detained Smith and questioned him overnight. But Smith was released the next day. 

Investigators are still looking for Swanigan’s accomplices.

WRTV interviewed Guy Relford, an attorney specializing in the Second Amendment, to explain the situation.

READ MORE: Indy Mayor Has ‘Obvious’ Solution for Gun Violence But ‘Nobody Wants to Go There’

Indiana upholds a ‘Stand Your Ground’ law, empowering citizens to defend themselves, including the use of lethal force, if necessary, to prevent a forcible felony.

Under this law, residents who engage in self-defense, even when it results in a fatality, are not automatically subject to criminal charges.

In contrast, other states often have more stringent requirements for self-defense claims.

These may include the need for proof that the resident feared for their life or stipulations that the victim must first attempt to escape the situation before resorting to self-defense.

On that fateful day, Brent Smith was thrust into a perilous situation but stood his ground, effectively using his right to self-defense.

His actions, driven by the necessity to protect himself from harm, were supported by Indiana’s laws that champion the right to personal safety.

Does your state have a ‘Stand Your Ground’ law?

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