DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Authorities said a 72-year-old Dallas man fatally shot a suspected burglar behind his home and then went back to bed before finally calling police nearly two hours later.
James Michael Meyer has been charged with murder in the Thursday killing and was jailed on $150,000 bail as of Friday.
According to the arrest warrant affidavit, Meyer told police he was awakened at around 5 a.m. by noise outside and saw someone trying to break into his storage shed with a pickax. He said he grabbed his handgun, went outside and yelled at the person to stop and not come closer or else he’d shoot.
Police said he told investigators the person took several steps toward him, so he fired and the burglar dropped his pickax and ran toward the park behind his home. He allegedly told officers that he fired again “into the night” in the direction of the park then went back to bed — not knowing he shot anyone.
Meyer got up around 7 a.m. Thursday and thought he saw “a black bag” in the park, and upon closer inspection, he found the man’s body. His wife then called an attorney, seeking advice, before her husband called 911 to report he was the victim of a crime and that medical help was needed, according to the affidavit.
When officers responded to Meyer’s call in the 5400 block of Philip Avenue, they found the unidentified suspect in the backyard, face down on the ground with a gunshot wound to the back of his neck. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Homicide detectives arrested Meyer after their preliminary investigation.
One of Meyer’s neighbors, Calvin Holbrook, told CBS 11, “I’ve known him for a long time, he is an honest, upstanding citizen. I’ve never heard of him ever being violent”
Holbrook believes his neighbor does not deserve the murder charge he’s facing.
” I think that ultimately he simply was trying to defend himself.”
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)