Teen mom asks 911: Can I shoot? And does

2012-01-05 22:42

Washington - No charges will be laid against a teen mother in Oklahoma who rang 911 on New Year's Eve and asked if it might be OK for her to gun down an intruder at her mobile home, prosecutors said on Thursday.

Sarah McKinley, 18, shot and killed Justin Martin, 24, with a 12-gauge shotgun after calling police and asking in a near-whisper: "I've got two guns in my hand. Is it OK to shoot him if he comes through the door?"

"Well, you have to do whatever you can do to protect yourself," Grady County sheriff's dispatcher Diane Graham replied. "I can't tell you that you can do that, but you have to do what you have to do to protect your baby."

Graham then heard a gunshot over the telephone line.

Police found Martin's body, knife in hand, slumped over McKinley's sofa, and determined the mother of a three-month-old baby - whose cancer-stricken husband died on Christmas Day - had acted in self-defence.

"Our initial review of the case doesn't indicate she violated the law in any way," assistant district attorney James Walters told the Oklahoman newspaper. "He should have thought about it before he went into someone's home."

Martin's suspected accomplice Dustin Stewart, 29, who surrendered to police, was to appear in court on Thursday.

  • John - 2012-01-05 23:02

    Well done mum, well done. There are too many evil criminals in the world! 1 less!

      Sean - 2012-01-06 01:24

      Shoot the rubbish :)

      Kacee - 2012-01-06 06:15

      I dont see why we dont use this concept here, there are way to many laws to protect criminals.

      Kacee - 2012-01-06 06:16

      My house, I paid for it, and the things in it, and I did not invite you in.... so take some lead :)

      Carla - 2012-01-06 06:31

      Yes well to you mum.

      jacques.c.smit - 2012-01-06 08:06

      WHY CANT WE DO THE SAME IN SOUTH AFRICA?????? - 2012-01-06 08:20

      Our people and police will die alone because they cant shoot to kill. Big ups to the mom.

      Bloody-Agent - 2012-01-06 08:38

      If you shoot a person out of self defense in South Africa you would probably still get charged with murder as our laws seems to protect criminals more than normal law-abiding citizens! The "Info bill" is a perfect example of a new law to protect criminals!

      RPhiri - 2012-01-06 10:21

      I think i will be making a lot of calls to 911.

      Kacee - 2012-01-06 12:47

      LOL at the thumbs down on my above comment. You obviously like to have people come into your house uninvited, and possibly raping and killing your family and walking away with your goods? Or possibly you are criminals yourself's?

      Legend2005 - 2012-01-06 14:40

      u mean 10111? @RPhiri

  • stevefortuin - 2012-01-05 23:06

    Somehow I don't think this story would have ended in the same way if it took place in South Africa. Firstly, if there is an intruder in my home, what are the chances that I'd actually get through to somebody knowledgeable on 10111 ??!!

      Johan Grobbelaar - 2012-01-05 23:35

      You are of course assuming u will get through to 10111, arent you?

      Craig - 2012-01-06 01:02

      and you would not have a fire arm because of the illegal FCA... and you would probably have to reload a few times!

      Sean - 2012-01-06 01:26

      Remember we live in a 3rd world country goint to a 4th world country !

      hannesenbrianda - 2012-01-06 02:41

      The intruder will also be better armed than you.

      Vernon - 2012-01-06 06:32

      Well the lesson here is to first shoot then phone, if they tell you not to shoot hen at least you gave it your best shot to speak !!

      TJ - 2012-01-06 08:07

      I tried getting through to 10111 on New Years Eve when there were drunks letting off fire works outside our premises and scaring the living daylights out of the horses and dogs. I am still waiting for them to answer the phone. - 2012-01-06 08:22

      @TJ they were probably all drunk

      keketso.polisa1 - 2012-01-06 08:50

      They were drunk period

  • Settie Zuweni - 2012-01-05 23:08

    Here ask police such a question then you will find yourself in Pollsmor! Well done young lady.

      Sean - 2012-01-06 01:26

      Settie Zuweni , agree 200 % :)

      Juicecard - 2012-01-06 07:57

      Here u have time to call 10111,u`re dead.The scums here are armed with guns and are ruthless. Advice:just shoot at first sight.

  • Eugene - 2012-01-05 23:48

    This will be a good CSI episode ;-)

  • charmaine.rowlands - 2012-01-06 00:22

    Good for you young lady. I hope someone is there to help you get over both the trauma of losing your husband (on Christmas day, no less) and then having to shoot and kill a person to protect yourself and your little one. We salute you!

      Henri James Christie - 2012-01-06 06:28

      Agreed, as the 911 response was...."do whatever is necessary to protect yourself....." Our law does not permit this, we have to hand back firearms, do everything in favour of the criminals. Worst of all, become statistics

  • Bob - 2012-01-06 00:37

    Way cool...! Now try that with 10111...they won't answer!

      Sean - 2012-01-06 01:27

      First shoot , then phone :)

      louis.langenhoven - 2012-01-06 08:18

      maybe we should try what the journalists love talking about- I've read this a number of times in newspapers- shoot a warning shot at the suspect

  • Pawel - 2012-01-06 05:19

    Justice Done!!

  • Johan Louw - 2012-01-06 06:00

    Tradgedy is that she had to ask. The Law is an ass, William Shakespear wrote.

      louis.langenhoven - 2012-01-06 08:19

      and all this time I thought Oscar Wilde said that?

      Tracey - 2012-01-06 08:54

      Actually Louis it was Charles Dickens

      louis.langenhoven - 2012-01-06 09:08

      well that proves the fact the law is an ass beyond any reasonable doubt then...3 learned gentlemen all said the same thing!!

      louis.langenhoven - 2012-01-06 09:16

      now you've got me going...lookee here: In fact, 'the law is an ass' is from a play published by the English dramatist George Chapman in 1654 - Revenge for Honour: Ere he shall lose an eye for such a trifle... For doing deeds of nature! I'm ashamed. The law is such an ass. 'Published by' doesn't necessarily mean 'written by'. In 1653, Chapman's play was registered, as The Parricide, or, Revenge for Honor, to fellow playwright Henry Glapthorne. Some scholars contend that the play was the work of neither gentlemen and was written around 1620. Whoever the author was, we can be sure it wasn't Charles Dickens. However, it was Dickens who brought the phrase to the general public. Oliver Twist was an enormous success when it was first published as a serial and has become one of the world's best selling novels... the mystery deepens

      Deon - 2012-01-06 09:18

      She did not have to ask, was propbably unsure of the law.

  • Gregory Jurgens - 2012-01-06 06:04

    She would of been arrested in SA. Criminals have more rights than victims in this country.

  • Garth - 2012-01-06 06:43

    "He should have thought about it before he went into someone's home." Wouldn't it be wonderful to have the knowledge that the police force is out there for your and the rest of the public's safety?

  • Frik - 2012-01-06 06:46

    Well done Lady give her a bells

  • Llunhomey - 2012-01-06 06:47

    Great stuff! We need that tipe of guts in the new South Africa! WELL DONE!

  • Gregory Jurgens - 2012-01-06 06:54

    Don't call 911, use 357 .

  • Wayne - 2012-01-06 07:11

    Would love to see this application of the law in RSA. How apt is the logic in the comment "He should have thought about it before he went into someone's home."

  • daniel.w.gie - 2012-01-06 07:14

    well .... what do the anti - gun lobby , have to say now ....!

  • lawson.lutchman - 2012-01-06 07:21

    Good on yer, Shiela...

  • sbonelo - 2012-01-06 07:24

    done mom, at 18 years you still have a long life to live knowing you killed a man...he might be a criminal but you killed him, you are a murderer

      Col - 2012-01-06 07:30

      Oh ye of little brain matter. Shooting an armed assailant in self defence is only called murder in South Africa. Remember, she lives in the USA where self defence is self defence. If this were to happen at my house I wish my wife would have the balls to "murder" the attacker.

      Dawie - 2012-01-06 07:34

      And you sound like an idiot. She killed a robber/rapist/murderer, that makes her a hero!

      Lara - 2012-01-06 07:38

      And you say you're a genius???

      Garth - 2012-01-06 07:40


      winston.mullany - 2012-01-06 07:48

      You get dumb...criminal and you get dumber...sbonelo, here's your sign!

      Gregory Jurgens - 2012-01-06 07:48

      Yeah right Sbo, rather she get murdered @ 18. That woul save her the trauma of living with the guilt of killing some crazy crack head.

      Werner - 2012-01-06 07:54

      I wish someone would murder you

      Stephen - 2012-01-06 07:57

      Sbonelo!!! Murder is the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another human being .. according to Wikipedia, the lady defended herself, thus even in SA this should be self defence.

      Chantelle - 2012-01-06 08:11

      IDIOT - he had a knife in his hand, she had a baby to protect - rather, she die, so that she dont live with the guilt for the rest of her life??? MAKES NO SENSE - if anything, id be living with the relief that my baby is still alive...

      Deon - 2012-01-06 08:14

      You should google: "murderer". I guess you are in the same field as this thief?

      malcolm.molver - 2012-01-06 08:14

      Sbonelo what part of SELF DEFENCE don't you understand? Perhaps it's a complicated concept for you? And yet you call yourself a genius...more like a dumb@ss in my opinion!

      Monique - 2012-01-06 08:16

      Sbonelo, are you one of the scum bags that also do housebreaking and rape and murder etc are you scared we will return fire? I sure as hell would! I'd take my chances with jail but I will give my all to protect my children!

      Alana - 2012-01-06 08:17

      Do not agree with your response. Must she wait until he rapes her or kills her baby. What planet are living on.

      Jon - 2012-01-06 08:19

      no sympathy for the attacker, would you rather be reading they he sliced her to pieces with his knife and we must all then say atleast she didnt murder anyone....LoL f*%@ that! she saved her and her child's life so know that she no murderer...

      glenda.labuschagne - 2012-01-06 08:48

      Rather a murderer than a victim of rape and murder, my child's rape and murder!!! Go tell this to your own females, that they must allow bastards like you to do whatever they want!!!!

      Maroba - 2012-01-06 08:53

      you're an absolute idiot guy... if your little sister, niece or mother were in the same situation would you rather they allow themselves to be gang raped, brutaly beaten before having to watch some savage kill their infant child and then leave them for dead? Would that clear their conscience genius? And would they find solace in you're "at least you didnt shoot hem" speech? again I say, YOU are an idiot.

      Abisali - 2012-01-06 09:51

      You are a fool of note. Go and jump into the ocean before you pollute the gene pool.

      Caleb - 2012-01-06 12:14

      Sbonelo, you right man, we immediately go for the quick fix of eliminating someone from the face of the earth. 2 wrongs don't make a right.

      Shannon - 2012-01-06 12:20

      You MORON! He could have killed her and her baby. And if she had survived and her baby had been killed she would have to live with the fact that she didn't do anything to protect him... Get a life Sbonelo. Until you are in that position don't pass judgement on how she will live the rest of her life. She might have killed a man, but that might have been the man that raped her, or killed her son! Grow a pair!

      beaglesr - 2012-01-06 13:09

      You need to have your head checked...

      Neville - 2012-01-07 11:30

      @sbonelo. Listnen you prick, I had a son of 19 shot dead in La Porta, Michigan USA, the guy got locked up for life, but that does not bring back my son, so you idiot, come try and break into my damn house, I won't shoot you, I keep you as a damn prize and and slowly kill you like a wild dog. That's what it has come down to, eye for an eye. You and your sort have no morals at all, protect the criminals, like hell, come try your luck by my house.

  • Chris - 2012-01-06 07:51

    Hope "gun free SA" read this...

      Caleb - 2012-01-06 09:12

      Chris, yes I'm from the anti-gun camp. This case is the exception, and that's why it's highlighted. It's still a fact that most.people are killed by their own guns, than by someone elses. Our history of gun carrying boers who could just shoot a "darkie" at will are long gone, and perhaps you long for those days where your actions would not be questioned when shooting a person on your property because his skin colour made him more suspicious.

      Kyle - 2012-01-06 09:36

      @Caleb - if there is a guy with a gun on my lawn the last thing I'm wondering about is his skin colour, I'll shot first then worry about the other rubish. Simple fact is, if you enter my ward unlawfully with a gun your dead.... dont care what colour you are....

  • Clement Venter - 2012-01-06 07:53

    To everyone that dont know, read the firearms control act and criminal act in sa. We can do the same in SA. If your life is threatend, defend by lethal force. A 12 gauge would do the trick.

      Jon - 2012-01-06 08:14

      but they only consider your life to be threatened when your intruder has pulled the trigger first.....

      Riaan - 2012-01-06 09:14

      Or you are near dead.

      Caleb - 2012-01-06 09:15

      Thanks for clearing that up Clement. These ignorant fools need to be educated that we too can protect ourselves, so one highlighted case in America suddenly becomes our dream zone? lol

      Snoopsy - 2012-01-06 09:25

      Clement, the Victim may only use self defence once the intruder has done grievous bodily harm. South Africa's justice system protects the Criminal and not the Victim, my mom shot at an intruder and the SAPS wanted to charge her with attempted murder?.. How do you figure that ? Shoot to Kill! Protect yourselves, because our Government is NOT!

      Kyle - 2012-01-06 09:39

      @Caleb - here is the diffrence, there have been so many cases in SA where people have acted in self defence and then been charged for a crime. One case a cycalist saw a women being robber, he rushed to her aid fought off the attacker. The cycalist was then charged with assault and thrown in jail. self defence in SA does not mean you are in the right, it means you better hope the NPA is in a good mood and if not that you have a good lawyer. By law in SA this women would have been charged.

      Lionel - 2012-01-06 10:47

      Self-defence is not statutorily defined - it's up to the trial judge - if this had happened here, there is no doubt that the Police would have arrested her, and the prosecution would have gone ahead, maybe she would be acquitted, and maybe not. So no, in reality we can't do the same.

  • Starlight3 - 2012-01-06 07:58

    I take my hat off to a very brave woman, who did what was necessary to protect herself and her family! She has had to endure a terrible and traumatic Festive Season and my thoughts and prayers are with her!

  • Moi - 2012-01-06 08:12

    Good for her.

  • Jon - 2012-01-06 08:13

    If only we could the same in this country, in S.A. she would probably be in jail right now for the simple fact that he only had a knife.....

      stefan.vanderspuy - 2012-01-06 09:19

      No, even in SA this is not true. If your life or any one else that you can protect is in danger, you have the right to protect yourself, even if it means shoot to kill. You won't go to jail. I know of several such instances.

  • Perfume5 - 2012-01-06 08:20

    We should adopt this in South Africa, too many "human rights" for the murderers and rapists, what about our rights.

  • Jonathan - 2012-01-06 08:36

    In SA, headline would have read "Racist White woman with ties to Jan van Riebeck guns down helpless neighbour" even though both seem to be from the same ethnicity. Our problem is that criminals have too much right and it is way to easy for them to get off on a misdemeanour. Wouldn't it be nice just to get to a stage where the good look after each other from the bad and stand together against "intruders". Here's hoping 2012 brings us that!

  • Lloyd - 2012-01-06 08:39

    "...two guns in my hand..." if only I had ywo guns...

  • Morne - 2012-01-06 08:46

    18 with a baby and a dead husband. Mobile home? I think - Trailer trash with 2 guns at 18. Maybe this guy wanted to borough a knife sharpener.

      louis.langenhoven - 2012-01-06 08:49

      this lady is going to protect her style and all

      Abisali - 2012-01-06 09:59

      @Morne: Another one displaying his obvious lack of cerebral matter. Please join up with your pals Sbonelo and Balstrome, you all seem to give preference to the rights of the lawless over the rights of the law-abiding victims.

  • keketso.polisa1 - 2012-01-06 08:54

    "He should have thought about it before he went into someone's home."

  • Caleb - 2012-01-06 08:54

    All of your comments are not based on individual cases and just because one case is highlighted, suddenly America is all just and good. Violence does not solve violence, It just makes you act out your anger. So it's okay for you to kill a criminal, and yet it's not okay for the criminal to kill? Why don't we look at better examples such as Britain, Germany, or even Japan where gun ownership is discouraged,and yet crime is way, way lower than the US. Look at the crime shows on Telly, most of them are based on cases in the US, so how can we look to the US as an example for us to follow? Crime, Violence, Murder, Rape, occurs in ALL countries people, so please stop making as if SA is the only country with violence.

      John - 2012-01-06 09:06

      "So it's okay for you to kill a criminal, and yet it's not okay for the criminal to kill?" You are an idiot Caleb.

      Kyle - 2012-01-06 09:18

      so you see no difference between killing in self defence and killing for the sake of it? so next time a family member of yours is being attacked, please remember this and don’t try help out, just stand back and watch the attacker kill you family member cause if you do help out you are just as bad as him.

      Blade - 2012-01-06 09:38

      Caleb there is so much that I could tell you about the real world and I could prove you wrong in so many ways but I would be wasting my time on an uneducated, ignorant fool.

      Abisali - 2012-01-06 10:13

      @caleb: Please post just whose lies you are quoting. A firearm in the hands of the law-abiding removes the violence from any conflict situation. You will have to convince me of your point of view using facts and logic as you can no longer force me to do so because you are bigger and stronger. Imagine a 50kg woman saying no to a rapist, now imagine that same woman saying no while pointing a .38 spl at him. Guess which will be the more persuasive? As can be seem from your obviously trolling, you are looking for others to support your rubbish case of DISARMING VICTIMS. It is not going to work because your South African countrymen have had enough of crime. So stop shouting out your LEGAL GUNFREE SOUTH AFRICA policy of disarming victims. Let your government FIRST reduce crime levels to a negligent level than approach law abiding citizens to discuss anti baton and pepper spray legislation.

  • keketso.polisa1 - 2012-01-06 08:59

    Two guns? she was ready for him. Wild wild west!

  • masiela.Rudluv - 2012-01-06 09:06

    the Law in S.A protects these scums almost as much as it protects the victims equally!!

  • EbenJvR - 2012-01-06 09:19

    If you do the same here in SA, you'll be up for murder. Twisted laws we have here.

  • Neil - 2012-01-06 09:22

    Don't even bother to phone 10111, I did and had to phone six times before someone answered. Still waiting for the police to arrive at my home though. Just shoot the scumbag and bury him in a concrete casket.

  • chris.heiberg - 2012-01-06 09:47


  • TheWatcher - 2012-01-06 10:08

    One down. I wish more people were like this woman.

  • mlvwk - 2012-01-06 10:18

    Assuming one IS lucky enough with 10111, and there IS some sort of intelligent life on the other side, the answer, I think, will be something like "no, no, you can't just shoot, hold on, hold on, let me speak to the sargant (no typo) first.. Beep, beep, beep......

  • paul.prinsloo3 - 2012-01-06 10:20

    Good girl! Excellent advice Diane Graham, Grady Sheriff' department dispatcher. Can you imagine what the advice would have been if Sarah McKinley should have posed that question to an operator in South Africa, which fortunately would have been impossible as she probably would have been on a call waiting list playing music while she and her baby were being burried.

  • Charmain - 2012-01-06 10:36

    good for you

  • Lionel - 2012-01-06 10:41

    It's sad that we can no longer do the same here

  • Rory - 2012-01-06 10:53

    Actually, the last time my house got broken into the Police themselves told me I should shoot them, ask questions later...but make sure they're dead so they can't talk about it in court....

  • Chinell - 2012-01-06 11:04

    well done mummy!

  • Annerie - 2012-01-06 11:05


  • Michael - 2012-01-06 11:07

    This is the type of death penaltty we should adopt if the government does not help, call the police for a permission to kill the criminal, I like.

  • Kenneth - 2012-01-06 11:11

    With heads of the police force in SA lining up to share jail cells, what do you expect in the form of crime fighting. It's scary to see how many 'likes' are showing on the comments here, the scary factor being that the powers that be do not seem to grasp the seriousness and extent of crime, especially violent crime, has got to in this country. Simply put, people are just gatvol.

  • robbie.crouch - 2012-01-06 11:15

    Castle Doctrine rules!

  • Caleb - 2012-01-06 12:04

    John, Kyle, Blade and Abisali, your points are valid and I'm not taking anything away from a victim's right to defend against a perpetrator but You gentlemen are missing my point. In 2001, I lived abroad and a mugger approached me with a knife. I disarmed the attacker, without a weapon, and using reasonable force. Neither the attacker or myself was injured. Secondly, Many legal gun owners become murderers when they kill their spouses and children and this without any provacation from an intruder. Again my point, which you seem to miss, Being a legal gun owner, does not absconed you from breaking the law. I think it is you who is ignorant, not dumb, just ignorant. Their are no dumb people on this earth, just uneducated ones. Just Google some stats on gun crime and you'll see for yourself, and hopefully you'll be more enlightened. It is not a coincidence that Gun free societies have much lower crime stats than the US or SA. I strongly recomend Michael Moore's documentry: "Bowling for Columbine". Perhaps this american activist will have a bigger impact on you than myself , who is apparently too dumb and ignorant to educate you. Pity.

      Kyle - 2012-01-06 12:41

      @Caleb - good for you, If the mugger attacked me he'd be dead. here's my point, if you attack me with an attempt to do bodily harm or kill you will die, you have no right to life. Most violent crimes in SA are committed by people on parole of who have recently come out of jail.... what’s the point sending them back. Second to that point it is fact in SA criminals have more rights than victims, your mugger could have sued you for assault, your word against his it's pretty much 50-50 who will go to jail. I've watch "Bowling for Columbine" that has no bearing on this discussion or on this article, it was about the wildly uncontrolled and lack of enforcement of guns in the US. This is about self defence..... just think on this, same scenario as in the article, except the women did not have a gun "women calls police, tells them someone is trying to break in and she is defenceless with a child, please tell her to try lock herself in (and they will also tell her to get a weapon if she think can defend herself) police her screams and the phone goes dead. Headlines net day, women raped and murdered, 3 moth of child also murdered. which head line suites you and your gun free zone better?

      Garth - 2012-01-06 13:41

      It would be unwise to base an argument on the self-aggrandisement of the self-centred Michael Moore. He climbs on his high horse very quickly when`bowling' balls at the feeble-minded and the ignorant, but watch him answer one informed person - you will not see it; all edited out to make MM always right. Watch some of his other stuff, watching for his evasiveness and you will confirm what I have said.

      Abisali - 2012-01-06 14:23

      @caleb: define your glib term "gun crime" please. Then define crime when knives are used, bottles, poison, motor vehicles, baseball bats etc. Guns are inanimate objects, they can do nothing by themselves. Without human intervention they just sit there, incapable of any action OR do you deny that? Can guns just hop up and commit crime? See how ludicrous your statement is? You are the one who is being IGNORANT, and to be blunt, criminally stupid as well. People like you, through your misplaced stupidity, are the cause of innocent victims being left defenseless in the face of armed criminals. Just for your information, the legal gun owner is just about the most law-abiding sector of any population in the world. I lived in SA and abroad, still abroad currently and your premise is just run of the mill gun free south africa rubbish propaganda. Same old gun free rubbish that fortunately South Africans seem to have had just about enough of. Your use of statements rather than fact is also typical gun hating propaganda. Rather have a gun and never need it a gun and not have one. Armed civilians are citizens. Unarmed civilians are subjects. Just why is your government so eager to remove legal firearms from it's population? Just why can your government not show the country what it wants to achieve and at what cost, by disarming law abiding citizens? Come on!! Put your money where your mouth is (and facts please - no more gun free, gun hating rubbish)

  • EyesEars - 2012-01-06 12:12

    This is something that I can support! She did what she had to do. @ stevefortuin - I totally agree with you. Once you have gone through a waiting period of ± 10min just so someone can pick-up the call and you ask them a question, or would this constitute as another excuse me for plain stupidity and trying to proof the guilty, innocent. Weird! Only a handfull of intellegent people remained in this world.

  • greentl - 2012-01-06 12:30

    Good for her, if only the same applied here in SA, where the criminals walk free for murder & rape!:(

  • Gary - 2012-01-06 12:47

    We need a bit of that in this country - well done, lets take them down!!

  • Caleb - 2012-01-06 13:08

    @Kyle. Point taken. I still believe in a gun-free society but I see your point.

      Abisali - 2012-01-06 14:28

      @Caleb: why a gun free society? Why not a CRIME FREE SOCIETY? Or a RAPE FREE SOCIETY? Do you hate guns so much you would rather have rapists, murderers and other criminals walk free so that you can exercise your hatred of guns? You gun grabbing, gun free south africa people are a strange bunch indeed. But fortunately your time is over, you are a non-entity in South Africa and will never again regain the hold you once held over weak willed South African politicians. The PEOPLE will see to that!

  • Fawzia - 2012-01-06 13:46

    Good for her & i will follow her example & would advise others to do the same, because the judicial system in South Africa seems to be for the criminals & not the victims of horrific crime. The entire South African's govts & justice system on crime & criminals needs a total overhaul.