Car Owner Confronts Thief With Handgun

Published : Wednesday, August 29, 2018 | 2:18 PM

A Pasadena resident caught a thief inside his car early Wednesday morning and confronted him with a handgun, but the thief escaped only to be caught by police a short while later.

The suspect allegedly stole various items from four cars which their owners left unlocked in the 500 block of North Summit Avenue. The thief was finally stopped by a car owner at about 1 a.m. .

When the suspect saw the man pointing a gun at him, he got out of the car and fled.

The victim called police. Arriving officers cornered and captured the suspect.

Authorities said Demario Dwayne Ellis, 29, of Pasadena was arrested on suspicion of petty theft.

Pasadena Police Lieutenant Max Dahlsten said that because the victims’ cars had been left unlocked and because the suspect was found with little of value in his possession taken from the cars, police could only charge him with a misdemeanor.

Ellis was soon released by police.

Pasadena Police Lieutenant Jason Clawsen pointed to the dangers of civilians attempting to stop a crime by pointing a gun at the suspect.

“It’s not advised for a person to confront a suspect with a firearm, especially to try and detain them,” said Clawson. “There are many things that could go wrong.”

The victims’ lack of training, the will of an adversary to escape or resist arrest, the possibility that arriving police could mistake the victim as being the suspect all suggest a better course of action might simply be to call police to the scene if the nature of the incident is not immediately life-threatening.


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