Homeowner, 76, to Wounded Intruder: ‘You just lay still. I got another shell in here’

A New York man defended his home and his wife from an armed intruder this week, local media reports. 

The 76-year-old homeowner, who asked to remain anonymous, was at his residence in Genesee County, watching TV, when someone began knocking on his door around 9 p.m. Tuesday night.  

“So I answered the door, which normally I will, because you never know when somebody needs help,” the homeowner told WGRZ.

“Soon as I cracked the door,” the homeowner continued, “he pushed me and the door back with a gun in my face, and he says, ‘This is a robbery. Get me your money or I’m gonna kill you!”

Being at a clear disadvantage, the homeowner and his wife of 50 years had no choice but to comply with the robber’s demands.  The two scrounged up what money they had and gave it to the perp.  

The robber then ordered the two into the basement.  Alarmed that this might be the end for the couple, the homeowner decided that he would have to act.  As his disabled wife was getting into her stair chair to descend down the steps, the homeowner ventured ahead to retrieve a doubled-barrel shotgun on a cellar shelf loaded with birdshot. 

“And so I just came down, backed up to the wall, you know,” he explained.

“I never fired it. I didn’t even know if it would shoot or not,” he said. “Reached up, brought it down, put it behind my back because it’s a shotgun, you know?”

The homeowner waited for the perp to enter the room and when he did: BOOM!

“So I just came up and shot from the hip. One barrel because it’s a doubled-barrel shotgun, and he went down.”

SEE ALSO: Family Upset As Homeowner Avoids Charges for Shooting Shirtless Partygoer

Following the shot, the homeowner called the police and waited approximately 15 minutes for them to arrive.  As for the wounded intruder, he issued him a solemn warning.    

“I said, ‘You just lay still. I got another shell in here. You just lay still, be quiet, there’s help coming,” he said. 

Authorities have identified the alleged robber as 36-year-old Charles Cooper, a Seneca county man.  Cooper was airlifted to a hospital where he was treated for his wounds.  He was listed in “guarded condition.”  

Cooper and his brother Joshua have been arrested in the past for soliciting without a permit, scheme to defraud and conspiracy, Genesee County Sheriff’s deputies told WHAM.  

Investigators say Cooper will face charges for his latest stunt.  

Reflecting on the harrowing incident, the homeowner said, “It’s not something your proud of. It’s not something you wanna do, but I was afraid he was gonna kill us.”

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 23 comments… add one }
  • Stan d. Upnow April 1, 2022, 11:02 am

    Two mistakes by the old gent– 1) he opened the door; 2) he loaded birdshot instead of buckshot.
    Glad that couple came through unscathed. Learn the lesson.

  • Chuck Reynolds April 17, 2020, 5:38 am

    So thankful that the couple is OK! Well done, Sir!

    • MeeesterPaul January 31, 2022, 10:49 am

      Cops got there same day. So that’s good,,,, right?

  • NJ February 4, 2020, 10:38 am

    Perp was released from the hospital on 12/26 and immediately charged and imprisoned. Homeowner still anonymous, no charges, no civil suit. Most of NY is not NYC…

  • Chuck November 13, 2019, 4:26 am

    I’m 68, will defend my home and wife to the death. If this had happen to me, there is no way any intruder would have any chance with what come out of my 12 gauge auto-loader. The torso would look like it had been run thru a meat grinder. I’ve loaded up some “real special home defense loads”.

    • Chuck Reynolds April 17, 2020, 5:40 am

      I like how you have prepared for trouble!

    • Stan d. Upnow April 1, 2022, 11:08 am

      Careful there, Chuck. Some Soros DA will turn that “real special load” around on you. It’s happened before that they try to nail the shooter for using “extra lethal” handloads. Makes no sense, but then, none of them ever do.

  • Jim November 9, 2019, 10:47 am

    Virginia should take note, now that they have voted in anti-gun Democrats this incident COULD NOT have happened because the elderly man would NOT have had a shotgun to defend himself and his wife and the suspect WOULD HAVE KILLED both of them so he could get away and never be able to ID the suspect. This is a lesson for the Country, DO NOT GIVE UP YOUR RIGHTS TO POSSESS A FIREARM! Criminals WILL still have their guns because they do not obey the laws and the criminals WILL still have their firearms!

  • O. Robertson November 8, 2019, 7:20 pm

    Birdshot, assuming 7 1/2, 12ga. at less than 10 feet. 15min. response time, they better had brought a body bag. Wherever he was hit he had a huge wound channel.
    I do not believe the bad guy survived the police arrival, most cops suck at first aid.
    Assuming ambulance arrived 5 min. later, the guy should be dead after 20 min.
    Even if he was hit in the hand the hand would be off.
    Calf? a 1-2 inch hole through it. Lots of veins and arteries.
    Wherever he was hit left a big nasty hole. And it bled a lot.
    I don’t think he would have survived it.
    I was an ER medic a very busy Evacuation Hospital in Vietnam, with two tours.
    Any shot gun hit at close range is brutal to whatever body part is hit.

  • Leon November 8, 2019, 6:19 pm

    Glad this all worked out as it did. Anyone who believes the police are there to protect them has no idea what they are talking about. So unless you can hire a personal body guard to accompany you 24/7, you have no protection other than what you provide for yourself. The police will show up after the incident to take photos, notify next of kin and write a report, that’s all they can do. Protection of the public is not something they can offer.

  • XDS Dave November 8, 2019, 11:54 am

    We do not know what this gentlemen’s background is, but he sure seemed to have handled this situation with a cool head. I think most people would have been scared beyond handling it so well. The article certainly indicates everything he did was almost step by step thought out. First he complies with the perp’s demands, then he is able to somehow get far enough away from the guy to obtain a shotgun and hide it behind his back and pull it out and get a shot off before the bad guy can get a shot off. All while thinking this bad guy is going to kill him and his wife. Seriously, my hat is off to this gentlemen. I really do not know if I could have handled the situation as well. I probably would have done something stupid.

  • Alan Dinehart November 8, 2019, 11:12 am

    Did anyone notice the comment “….my wife called the police and they showed up 15 minutes later.” When seconds count, the police are only minutes away! Self-defense is your responsibility. The police carry guns to protect themselves!

    • Stan d. Upnow April 1, 2022, 11:12 am

      15 minutes? That’s amazing. I once called the police at 8pm and the officer showed-up at 12:30am– 4-1/2 hrs later!

  • Paul November 8, 2019, 9:03 am

    Frankly I’m surprised that this homeowner is going to be “un-charged”. New York is a despicable state for gun owners. I doubt that this story has a happy ending. Maybe no criminal charge for the homeowner, but civil charges may be coming. People in this state are insane.

    • srsquidizen November 9, 2019, 7:29 am

      Unless evidence comes forth that things happened very differently this is a “no jury would convict” situation, so even the most anti-gun DA isn’t going to attempt prosecution. However, a close-range shotgun blast anywhere to the body is going to cause massive injury (center-mass he’d likely be dead) so I wouldn’t be surprised if the perp hires a predattorney to sue the guy…especially if he has assets and/or umbrella policy worth suing for.

      • Stan d. Upnow April 1, 2022, 11:19 am

        Yeah. Perp’s lawyer argues that the homeowner defendant deprived his client of his “civil rights.” That would be the “right” to pursue his criminal activities. We’ll settle the case for $5million.

    • Alexandra November 10, 2019, 8:15 am

      Allow me to correct you. Most of NY is rural. We have guns.our local cops and judges don’t care much for what Albany has to say. Everyone I know in WNY has plenty of long guns around the house for hunting and home protection. It has nothing to do with the jury, it won’t ever get to court. This perp watches too much CNN.

  • Michael November 8, 2019, 7:57 am

    I DO Hope that the homeowners aim and the shotguns pattern have a direct impact on the perps future ability to Reproduce…..or NOT! As an older man myself, with limited abilities in a physical altercation, it would serve him right

  • TraderJack November 8, 2019, 6:20 am

    Nice job. Clear thinking and a cool head in a high stress situation. Hope I could have performed just as well.
    Proud of ya fella!

  • peter parkman November 8, 2019, 5:26 am

    This poor guy is well within his rights. Not only did this perp get what he deserves, but there is the disparity of force. A 76 Y. O. man hasn’t the strength or agility to fend off a young thug. God bless you sir and your wife. You’re a brave man.

    • Dan Crocker November 8, 2019, 6:48 am

      Well said. As in many other cases, when SECONDS count, the police are usually MINUTES away. That’s not a dig on them. That’s just the reality of it.

    • Floyd Robinson November 8, 2019, 8:41 am

      Well it’s a sure case of having it & not needing it & verses needing it & not having it!

    • SD November 8, 2019, 10:51 am

      Only mistake this guy made is he didn’t kill the bastard

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