A Tulsa Oklahoma man was shot and killed by a car burglar yesterday morning around 1:30-am while trying to confront the thief. The story was reported by KOTV News 6 and I stumbled across it while scrolling Facebook earlier this morning. It's a tragic story and a man has lost his life, but we can all learn some very valuable lessons from this. In no way am I making light of this situation, or cruelly judging the actions of the victim.

So here's what we know about this incident according to the TPD (Tulsa Police Department). They responded to a shooting scene or victim near South 65th West Avenue and Charles Page Boulevard.

Prior to this, they received several calls about gunshots at the Sandy Park Apartments. Investigating the shooting they discovered that a couple who live in the apartments had witnessed a car burglar trying to break into vehicles. They yelled at the person from their balcony and the thief ran off.

Here's where it starts to go bad. The couple decided to get in their car and go after him. That's when the thief shot and killed the man, according to the reports he was shot in the back. That would mean they caught up with the thief and the man chasing him got out of the car. Or at least it sounds that way.

It would be awful hard to shoot someone in the back if they were seated in their vehicle. After being shot he tried to drive himself to the hospital but wrecked on the way there. He later died at the hospital from a gunshot wound. The woman wasn't shot or critically wounded by the gunman or wreck.

At this time TPD is still looking for the gunman and it's an active investigation. If you know anything about this you're asked to call Crimetoppers at 918-596-COPS (2677). The only description given of the shooter is that he is a small man. So what can we learn from all of this? Well, there are several lessons.

First, it's NEVER a good idea to go chasing after criminals. If you witness something report it to the police. Give as much detail as you can and descriptions of the person or persons involved. To witness a crime then give chase with your wife in tow isn't a good plan. What about her safety? I get it, there's an instinct to do something or help but you're better off providing police with details, than taking the law into your own hands.

There's a HUGE DIFFERENCE between self-defense and pursuing a criminal. If there's an active situation and you have no other choice but to engage or lend assistance that's one thing. It's quite another to pursue someone after the fact. Unfortunately, this man found out the hard way that you don't confront criminals. I feel terrible for this man's wife and family and wish this never happened. So unless you have no other choice, leave the crime-fighting to the professionals.

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