Cops: Burglar shot to death by homeowner on West Side

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A 44-year-old man on crutches fatally shot one of two intruders who came charging at him Friday morning in the Heart of Chicago neighborhood, according to police.

Mario Viramontes, 31, was declared dead on the scene in 2000 block of West 21st Street at 9:22 a.m., according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Police were called to the scene about 9:10 a.m. for a burglary, and when they arrived, they found that a “male offender” who had been trying to commit a burglary had been shot by the homeowner, said Police News Affairs Sgt. Antoinette Ursitti.

The 44-year-old homeowner was sleeping when his frightened 18-year-old daughter woke him up telling him that she heard noises and thought someone was breaking into the apartment behind theirs, according  a police report.

At first she thought the noise was a heater in that apartment but after she heard something fall, she locked the door that separates the two residences, the report said.

The man “grabbed both of his crutches and walked over and unlocked and opened the door,” the report said.

He did not see anyone at first, so he returned to his bedroom to get his gun and when he went back to the rear apartment, he saw two intruders “charging towards’’ him so he shot at them, according to the report.

Both stopped, turned around and ran back towards the back door, but one of them collapsed and fell to the floor.

Two men were seen running away and yelling gang slogans and the 44-year-old told his daughter to call 911.

Responding officers found the back door of the rear apartment been pried with a metal shovel and found shell casings on the kitchen floor, the report said.

During the course of the investigation, police learned the 44-year-old homeowner’s FOID card was expired and he was charged with one count of possessing a firearm with an expired FOID card, a misdemeanor, police said.

Viramontes lived in the 2100 block of West Cermak Road, about two blocks from the break-in, officials said. An autopsy is scheduled for later today.

Copyright © 2014 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC

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7 comments

  • Jock E Shift

    Current FOID card or not, the home owner did exactly what he needed to do. The bullet got there before the cops ever would. One less punk on the streets.

  • jake

    If this man didn’t have a gun he would possibly be dead and his daughter raped and dead. Commonsense he just saved his family in his own home why charge him. Cpd is like a gustopo look at how they hide evidence in the dave koschman trail no police was charged and the nephew of the man that sold parking the meters to his family’s firm only resceives 60days in jail. Chicago police are only puppets for the elitist of this city they never bring justice for the common person.

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