A man shot and killed a would-be carjacker in the parking lot of an Orem, Utah, grocery store.
The shooter, a 31-year-old male with a concealed weapons permit, was trying to stop the 27-year-old male suspect from stealing a woman’s Mercedes SUV, reports KSL.
Police have neither released the name of the deceased suspect nor the man who fatally wounded him.
The suspect was also reportedly involved in the assault of a woman earlier in the day.
The man who helped the victim being carjacked was parked nearby when he heard her screams and ran to her aid.
"According to the citizen’s statement, the suspect starts to walk to the back of the car and lunges at him trying to grab the gun," Capt. Ned Jackson of the Orem Police Department said. "The citizen shoots one round, shoots the suspect in the chest."
The man reportedly felt threatened and he fired his weapon.
Paramedics were called to the scene and worked on the injured suspect, who suffered one gunshot wound. He later died at Utah Valley Hospital.
FOX 13 reports that the incident began at the Summit Ridge Apartment Complex, where police were called to a fight. Five people, three women and two men, fled the scene in a vehicle through a grassy area.
A witness was nearly hit by their car.
“I could have been hit, I was standing right here and they came up and the officer just followed pursuit,” witness Rae Eddy said.
The car stopped after it hit a curb and all five people exited the vehicle. The carjacker stole a pickup truck and fled while the others ran on foot. Two of the women were apprehended and taken in for questioning by police.
When the man got to the grocery store parking lot, he abandoned the pickup and approached the woman in the Mercedes SUV to attempt to carjack the vehicle.
According to police, the man had several felony warrants.
The man who shot the carjacker will not face charges as the use of deadly force was justified.
“If someone is trying to break into your vehicle, especially while you are in it, that’s considered a forcible felony under Utah law and under that code section it says you can use any force necessary to stop the person who is in the commission of that forcible felony,” Clark Aposhian, board member of the Utah Shooting Sports Council, said.
Jackson said the carjacker did not appear to be armed but the case is still under investigation.
Photo Source: KSL