Crime

Getaway Driver Responds To Killing Of Teen Burglars

| by Kathryn Schroeder

The woman accused of being the getaway driver for a group of Oklahoma teen thieves who were killed by the man they allegedly attempted to rob does not blame him for their deaths.

"[The resident] did what, you know, by law he could do to protect his home," Elizabeth Marie Rodriguez, 21, said in a jailhouse interview with ABC News.

Rodriguez is facing three counts of first-degree felony murder, three counts of first-degree burglary, and one count of second-degree burglary in the fatal shooting of the three teen suspects: Maxwell Cook, 19; Jacob Redfearn,17; and Jaycob Woodruff, 16.

All three teens were shot by the homeowner's son, 23-year-old Zachary Peters, in the upper body with an AR-15 rifle.

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"I'm barricaded in my bedroom," Peters says on the 911 call he made after shooting the suspects in his home. "I am still armed in the southeast corner of my house."

One of the alleged burglars was still talking when Peters called 911, he told the operator.

"I know what we did was stupid and wrong," Rodriguez said. "I don't blame him. ... I understand why he did what he did. I mean, I do to an extent."

Peters' actions may qualify as self-defense under the state's "stand your ground" law, according to authorities. Under the law, a person may use lethal force to stop somebody else from committing a forcible felony, according to U.S. Law Shield. Oklahoma lists invasion robbery, burglary, carjacking and murder as forcible felonies.

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Rodriguez told ABC News that the decision to commit a home invasion was made by herself and the three slain teens, but that she was the one who targeted the Peters' home, believing it could be a particularly lucrative score.

The group first robbed a spare apartment at the Peters' home and then returned later to break in to the main house, Jack Thorp of the Wagoner County District Attorney's Office said.

There was no personal connection between Rodriguez and Peters.

"She called me right after it was done. She called me and she was freaking out. And then she told me that the three boys got shot ... I was like, 'What? What are you talking about? What do you mean?'" Ethan Ellison, a friend of Rodriguez's and the three male teens, told ABC News.

"She said that they thought that the house was empty ... All she knows, is she heard over 12 gun shots so she freaked out and left," he said.

Rodriguez has not yet retained a lawyer for her case.

Sources: ABC News, U.S. Law Shield / Photo credit: Heavy

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