Dallas homeowner kills 14-year-old burglar

Dallas homeowner kills 14-year-old burglar

POSTED: Wednesday, April 11, 2012 - 1:30pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, April 11, 2012 - 1:34pm

An Eastside homeowner shot and killed a 14-year-old intruder at his home Monday morning, Dallas police said.

Investigators said three teenage boys, one aged 13 and two aged 14, tried to burglarize a home in the 7300 block of Vallejo Drive.

Police said the teenagers reportedly rang the front doorbell of the home and went around to the back when no one answered.

Detectives said the homeowner, Lee Cobler, and his adult son both ignored the doorbell. Cobler armed himself when they heard the back door being kicked, and someone in the home called 911, investigators said.

"They first approached the residence and rung the doorbell they eventually made their way around to the back and one of the juvenile suspects kicked in the back door," Sgt. Warren Mitchell, Dallas Police Department, said.

Neighbors said Cobler, who is active in the community's crime watch program, warned the teenagers he was armed before firing the fatal shot.

Police said Luis Avila, 14, a student at Hood Middle School, was killed.

The Dallas independent school district sent a letter home to parents explaining what happened and informing them that grief counselors would be on hand to help students.

The 13-year-old and 14-year-old who were allegedly with Avila both ran from the scene but were arrested.

Cobler does not face any charges in the shooting. Police said the incident would be presented to a grand jury for their consideration.

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