(TIML NEWS) A 23-year-old Oklahoma man used a semi-automatic AR-15 rifle to shoot and kill three masked teenage intruders dressed in black who broke into his home Monday afternoon — an act authorities are investigating as self-defense.
Zach Peters, the homeowner’s son, fatally shot an 18-year-old man and two boys ranging between 16 and 17 around 12:30 p.m. The trio allegedly forced their way into the residence through a back door and were killed after exchanging words with Peters, who fired multiple shots.
Police said the alleged getaway driver, 21-year-old Elizabeth Rodriguez, surrendered to the Broken Arrow Police Department Monday evening and is facing charges on three counts of first-degree murder and three counts of burglary.
Her first court appearance, set for Tuesday, has been pushed to April 5 and she was ordered to be held on no bond.
“Upon making entry to the home, one of the residents fired a rifle striking all three of the suspects,” the Wagoner County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
Wagoner County Deputy Sheriff Nick Mahoney said that Rodriguez is being charged with the murders because she was in “commission of felony” when she allegedly dropped them off at the residence, meaning she had an intent to burglarize the home. He said the crime was random and there was no connection between the suspects and Peters.
Police said all of the unidentified suspects were wearing black clothes, masks and gloves. One was armed with a knife and another with brass knuckles. Two of the intruders died in the kitchen, while the other reached the driveway, “before succumbing to his injuries,” according to the statement.
After the shooting, police said the son and homeowner made statements at the sheriff’s office.
Although authorities are approaching the shooting as self-defense, Mahoney said the investigation is open and the district attorney will ultimately decide whether charges are filed.