Gun fire erupts, suspected car thief ends up dead when Texas man tracks down his stolen truck

A man in Texas tracked down two car thieves who stole his pickup truck, reportedly killing one and critically injuring the other while getting shot in the process as well.

(Video Credit: KENS 5)

The unnamed man tracked his pickup truck to a shopping center lot after he and his passenger left the mall and found the vehicle missing. When he located the truck, he confronted the thieves, holding them at gunpoint and telling them to get out of the vehicle, according to the Daily Mail. The man and his female accomplice sat down on the ground as the truck owner held them there for the police to arrive.

The man who stole the truck evidently pulled a weapon from his waistband and shot the truck owner, who returned fire, killing the thief. His accomplice was also shot and is now in critical condition at the hospital. The victim was transported to the hospital as well and is in stable condition, according to police.

The incident occurred outside the South Park Mall in San Antonio just before 1 pm on Thursday.

No charges have been filed yet but according to KENS 5, experts say that the victim was within his rights and was protecting himself and his property.

**WARNING: Graphic images**

(Video Credit: Daily Mail)

“The owners of the stolen vehicle tracked the vehicle to the parking lot back here behind me. They showed up, they find the vehicle, there were two individuals, a male and a female in the vehicle,” San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said at a press conference near the mall.

“At some point, the person who stole the vehicle and who is now being held at gunpoint by the owner of the vehicle produced a weapon from his waistband and shoots the owner of the vehicle,” he recounted.

McManus was adamant that the victim was within the law to do what he did.

“The bad guy is the one dead, yes,” McManus said. “The driver of the stolen vehicle is deceased, shot by the owner of the stolen vehicle.”

“Certainly a case of self-defense, is what we have,” he commented concerning the shooting. “We would prefer that they call the police before taking that into your own hands, but he did what he felt he needed to do.”

The male thief was pronounced dead at the scene, according to San Antonio police.

A video of the aftermath of the shooting shows the dead man lying on the ground while two people rushed to help his wounded female companion. She had blood dripping down her leg into a boot. Blood pooled around the dead man’s head as he sprawled in the parking lot from the fatal wound.

Texas has very strict “Stand Your Ground” laws that pertain to self-defense and cannot be nullified by a jury or a progressive district attorney, the state’s Governor has previously stated.

“He had every right to track his vehicle down,” McManus bluntly noted at a press conference.

(Video Credit: Daily Mail)

The dead man’s brother decried the car owner’s right to chase the thief down and kill him.

“The victim was my brother and there are two sides to every story,” Jose Garcia bitterly remarked, according to KENS 5. “Whether my brother was wrong or right, he had a gun pointed at him. I guess he took it upon himself to defend himself.”

He called the man who shot his brother a vigilante, adding that people should wait for the police before taking justice into their own hands.

“The guy who shot him is a vigilante, not a hero. A vehicle is not worth taking someone’s life, I don’t care what kind of car it is. You don’t take the law into your own hands,” Garcia contended. “Now my mom, my family, we all have to suffer and just deal with it.”

Based on preliminary information from investigators, defense attorney Nico LaHood asserted that the owner’s actions were justified under the Texas Penal Code.

“Citizens have a right to prevent the consequences of a theft,” the former Bexar County district attorney pointed out. “In that prevention of consequences, you can use force to prevent a theft. You can use physical force, but the law also says you can display a weapon. That is considered force, but it’s not considered deadly force.”

“What made this different,” LaHood stated, “was the suspect actually used deadly force against the vehicle owner. At that time, he had the right to use deadly force to prevent his own injury. He should not be facing any charges from this incident.”

An investigation is ongoing according to the police.

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