1 Dead, 1 Injured After Robbers Try To Mess With 70-Year-Old Vietnam Veteran

Screenshot from YouTube

An attempted robbery ended with one person dead and the other in the hospital and charged with murder when they chose the wrong victim, according to Madison County officials.

The attempted robbery, which took place in Venice on Thursday, was thwarted by the intended victim: a 70-year-old veteran with a concealed weapon, according to Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons.

Venice Police were called to the 200 block of Abbott Street at 10 a.m. Thursday on reports of shots fired. Police found the body of Billy Dickerson, 19, of St. Louis, and a gravely injured Perry Richardson, 23.

Police believe that Dickerson and Richardson attempted to rob two people sitting in a car in front of a residence on Abbott Street. One of them was a 70-year-old St. Louis man, a Vietnam War veteran who was driving a female friend back home.

Gibbons said Richardson pulled a gun on them. The man, who was not identified by police, pulled his own gun and fired at the alleged robbers, striking both of them.

“My guess is that they were shocked that this gentleman was ready to take care of them, when they thought they were taking care of him,” he said. “Even though they had the jump on him, he was clearly better prepared than they were.”

Dickerson was struck in the head and was pronounced dead at the scene. Richardson was struck in the arm and chest and was taken to Saint Louis University Hospital for treatment.

Gibbons said that the man had a Missouri permit to carry a concealed firearm. He said there were multiple witnesses to the incident, and their stories were consistent.

“Self-defense is an inalienable right in a free society, and the right to keep and bear arms is enshrined in the Second Amendment,” Gibbons said. “He was just an armed citizen who was able to defend himself and his friend and stopped what we’re learning was a crime spree by these individuals.”

Gibbons said police believe that Dickerson and Richardson were responsible for another armed robbery just an hour before in Madison County and may have been responsible for more than 20 armed robberies in the last year. Both had extensive criminal records, he said.

“Not only did he save himself, his friend and protect everyone around them. He may have saved another individual’s life, if these people had continued to do this,” Gibbons said.

Upon his full recovery, Richardson will be taken to the Madison County Jail and held without bail. He has been charged with first-degree murder. Under Illinois law, when two or more people are committing a felony and someone dies, the survivors can be charged with murder even when they are not the ones pulling the trigger.

The maximum penalty for first-degree murder is 20 to 60 years in prison, and Richardson would be required to serve 100 percent of his sentence.

“If you come here to commit your crimes, do not be surprised if you end up on the wrong side of a concealed weapon of a law-abiding citizen,” Gibbons said. “We will not tolerate violent crime, and we will defend ourselves, our loved ones and our community from the harm you intend to bring.”


©2017 the Belleville News-Democrat (Belleville, Ill.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

An undated image of Hoda Muthana provided by her attorney, Hassan Shibly. (Associated Press)

Attorneys for the Constitutional Law Center for Muslims in America have filed a lawsuit against Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General William Barr and President Donald Trump asking the court to recognize the citizenship of an Alabama woman who left the U.S. to join ISIS and allow she and her young son to return to the United States.

Read More Show Less
U.S. soldiers surveil the area during a combined joint patrol in Manbij, Syria, November 1, 2018. Picture taken November 1, 2018. (U.S. Army/Zoe Garbarino/Handout via Reuters)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States will leave "a small peacekeeping group" of 200 American troops in Syria for a period of time after a U.S. pullout, the White House said on Thursday, as President Donald Trump pulled back from a complete withdrawal.

Read More Show Less
Construction crews staged material needed for the Santa Teresa Border Wall Replacement project near the Santa Teresa Port of Entry. (U.S. Customs and Border Patrol/Mani Albrecht)

With a legal fight challenge mounting from state governments over the Trump administration's use of a national emergency to construct at the U.S.-Mexico border, the president has kicked his push for the barrier into high gear.

On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted a time-lapse video of wall construction in New Mexico; the next day, he proclaimed that "THE WALL IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION RIGHT NOW"

But there's a big problem: The footage, which was filmed more than five months ago on Sep. 18, 2018, isn't really new wall construction at all, and certainly not part of the ongoing construction of "the wall" that Trump has been haggling with Congress over.

Read More Show Less
(From left to right) Chris Osman, Chris McKinley, Kent Kroeker, and Talon Burton

A group comprised of former U.S. military veterans and security contractors who were detained in Haiti on weapons charges has been brought back to the United States and arrested upon landing, The Miami-Herald reported.

The men — five Americans, two Serbs, and one Haitian — were stopped at a Port-au-Prince police checkpoint on Sunday while riding in two vehicles without license plates, according to police. When questioned, the heavily-armed men allegedly told police they were on a "government mission" before being taken into custody.

Read More Show Less
Army Sgt. Jeremy Seals died on Oct. 31, 2018, following a protracted battle with stomach cancer. His widow, Cheryl Seals is mounting a lawsuit alleging that military care providers missed her husband's cancer. Task & Purpose photo illustration by Aaron Provost

The widow of a soldier whose stomach cancer was allegedly overlooked by Army doctors for four years is mounting a medical malpractice lawsuit against the military, but due to a decades-old legal rule known as the Feres Doctrine, her case will likely be dismissed before it ever goes to trial.

Read More Show Less