An Oregon man is facing charges for firing a warning shot with his AR15 when a wanted felon attempted to break into his home.
A veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Corey Thompson, 36, told KDRV that he jumped into combat mode when put in a “stressful” situation.
Police in Medford, Ore., said felon Jonathon Kinsella, 40, was attempting to break into the back door of Thompson’s home around 11:30 p.m. on Sunday. When they responded to a disturbance call they heard a gunshot and then saw Kinsella running away.
“When I’m dealt with a stressful situation, being a veteran from Iraq and the Afghanistan war, it’s natural. I just jump into combat mode. I told him, ‘I’m going to give you a warning shot’,” Thompson said.
The gunshot did not hit anyone, but authorities say Thompson was not justified in firing the weapon.
“There was nothing that the suspect was doing that was aggressive enough to justify the shooting. In fact, the suspect was walking away,” Medford Police Lt. Mike Budreau said.
Thompson was charged with the unlawful use of a weapon, menacing and reckless endangering.
He said he didn’t believe anyone was a risk of being harmed. “I can see where they’re coming from, with those kinds of ordinances and stuff. I understand yes, I did discharge my weapon but I was careful not to fire it at anybody’s residence. It was at the ground specifically,” he said.
Police pointed out that assault rifle bullets often skip. “They just don’t hit something and absorb. Especially if it’s something with that high velocity. It could skip off of objects and wind up going into a house, through a wall, through a window,” Budreau said.
His firearm was confiscated because police say it was used in the commission of a crime. If a judge finds him not guilty, the AR15 will be returned.
Kinsella was arrested on outstanding warrants, including burglary and assault.