Sunday, April 15, 2007

FL: Case poses early test for "Castle Doctrine" law: "Norman Borden hopes to become a trailblazer -- the first defendant in Florida to have a murder charge dismissed because of the state's fledgling 'Castle Doctrine' law. ... Borden, 44, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder and three other felonies in connection with the shooting deaths of Christopher Araujo, 19, and Saul Trejo, 21, and the wounding of a third man, Juan Mendez, who was 20 at the time. ... Public Defender Carey Haughwout argued that Circuit Judge William Berger should dismiss the indictment against Borden at a future pretrial hearing, saying that a preponderance of the evidence establishes his right to use deadly force. ... Borden and a friend were walking his dogs in his Westgate neighborhood in suburban West Palm Beach around 3 a.m. in October when he exchanged words with either Mendez or Araujo, according to witnesses. Araujo got behind the wheel of a Jeep, accompanied by Trejo, Mendez and a juvenile and drove toward Borden, with more yelling back and forth. After the juvenile got out of the Jeep, the men drove at Borden and his friend again. Trejo had a bat, according to Borden's attorneys, and he or Araujo also may have had a gun. This time, Borden opened fire on the Jeep until he had fired 14 rounds from his 9mm handgun. Then he went home and called police."

Ohio shootout leads to car accident : "A Warren man exchanged gunfire early Tuesday morning with someone who then tried to steal the man’s car, a police report shows. Martin Bonish, 55, 1625 Youngstown Road S.E. told police a man walking by his home as he was pulling into the drive about 12:45 a.m. opened fire after a brief conversation between the two. Bonish, licensed to carry a concealed weapon, returned fire, which is when the man jumped in Bonish’s still-running car and tried driving away, according to the report. But the man, who was trying to back out of the drive, hit a street sign and then accelerated forward across the street, through a fence and into a junk vehicle in a nearby parking lot, the report states. The man hopped a fence and got into a car that drove up to the crash, the report states.

New Hampshire: Shooter acted in self-defense : "Prosecutors dropped charges against Frank Meisel, accused of shooting his stepbrother, saying he acted in self-defense when he fired his .38-caliber revolver into the chest of David Richardson. Richardson, 53, went to Meisel's business, Windham Autobody at 47 Roulston Road, threatening to hurt him about 10 a.m. on March 1, police said. Meisel, 43, of Cluff Road in Salem fired his weapon after Richardson had swung a large bat at his head and threatened to hurt him, said Rockingham County Attorney James Reams. Police had charged Meisel with misdemeanor simple assault after the altercation, saying they would either upgrade or drop the charge, based on the investigator's conclusion. "Everything we had was consistent with self-defense," Reams said yesterday. Police had been to the garage hours before the shooting when Richardson, who lived about a half-mile away, showed up drunk and got into a fight with Meisel. Neither of the men were seriously hurt or wanted to press charges. Police told Richardson not to return to the garage, but he showed up a couple of hours later, armed with a large club. The arguments were the result of Richardson wanting to borrow money, police said. Meisel's account of what happened was supported by his bookkeeper, who saw both fights between the men, according to police."

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