Cherokee County, GA – A Baptist pastor used a gun to protect his wife and three daughters from a home intruder Nov. 16.
Euharlee Baptist Church Pastor Keith Beck heard glass breaking, and found 19-year-old Donavan Simmons trying to break into his house.
“The homeowner advised that the suspect was making entry into the basement area of his home when he shot in the general direction of the suspect,” Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Spokeswoman Marianne Kelley told the Atlanta Constitution-Journal.
The pastor fired one shot, and hit the intruder in the head.
A neighbor, Bill Kennedy, told WSB TV the Beck family heard the intruder breaking into their basement window.
“Come to the door and she was screaming, ‘Invader in the house!’ and her two kids were still in there asleep,” Kennedy said. “I think he did the right thing, protect his family.”
The pastor’s wife and 12-year-old child escaped the house, but the couple’s two younger children were still in a bedroom when their father shot the home invader.
Simmons was taken to the hospital after officers found him in the Beck’s backyard, where police said he stumbled after being shot in the head.
He was charged with burglary, making terroristic threats, and possession of a Schedule IV drug with intent to distribute.
Police said Simmons lives near the pastor, but it is unclear why Beck’s home was targeted.
Neighbors were supportive of Beck’s handling of the scary situation.
“I mean, I’m sorry that the individual chose to break into his home. But I’m glad the homeowner defended his family,” Ledlie Conger said.
He said it’s the second home invasion in the historically crime-free neighborhood in recent months. Conger’s family was the victim of a home invasion a couple months ago, but the family dog scared the intruder away, according to WAGA.
“Someone breaking into your house, you got a right to shoot them,” neighbor James Tanner agreed.