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Elderly Richmond Woman Scares Off Burglar With Gun

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An 84-year-old Richmond grandmother started shooting this pistol when a man broke into her house. (Richmond Police Dept)

An 84-year-old Richmond grandmother started shooting this pistol when a man broke into her house. (Richmond Police Dept)

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RICHMOND (KCBS) – Richmond Police are looking for a man who broke into an 84-year-old woman’s home on Sunday night only to leave empty-handed, after she began shooting at him.

Richmond Police Captain Mark Gagan said Gustava Harvey was jarred awake when someone kicked in her front door.

KCBS’ Bob Butler Reports:

“Just before midnight, the victim was home alone. She lives by herself and was asleep. She was woken by a huge noise, a crash. When she heard the noise, she reached for her bedside table and grabbed a revolver she had had for about 20 years,” Gagan said. “She had never fired it but felt that if she needed a gun, she would keep it right by her bed.”

Gagan said Harvey fired at the burglar and he ran away.

Neighbor Ron Beard said he was surprised because his neighbor is usually very quiet.

“She considers herself a Christian woman and I’m surprised that she would pull a gun on somebody,” he said. “But if somebody comes into your house, you’re afraid and it gives you bravery that you might not have otherwise had.”

Gagan said the police department doesn’t encourage residents to arm themselves because it usually ends up with someone getting hurt. But he said in this case, Harvey took the appropriate action.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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