Police in Dallas have arrested a 72-year-old homeowner, who they say shot a man attempting to break into his storage shed.
James Michael Meyer is accused of shooting the presumed thief outside his home — and then going back to bed before reporting the incident to police.
On Sept. 26, shortly after 7 a.m., police responded to Meyer’s home on Philips Avenue in Dallas where they found the suspected burglar’s body in a nearby park, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com. Upon initial inspection, police noted the man’s body was coated in dried blood and he appeared to have been dead for “several hours.”
Meyer told authorities that he had witnessed the man trying to gain access to his storage shed around 5 a.m.
“Meyer told the complaint not to come any closer or he would shoot him,” the arrest affidavit stated. “Suspect Meyer stated that the complainant took several steps towards him.”
Meyer said he yelled at the man, but that the suspected burglar turned and ran at him with a pick axe. Meyer then allegedly “chambered a round” and fired one shot at him with his hand gun.
“Meyer stated the complainant dropped the pick-axe and ran away in the direction of the park.... From the suspect’s accounts, the threat of serious bodily injury against him was over when the complainant dropped the pick-axe and ran off,” the affadvit reads.
Police said the Dallas man told them that he fired a second shot “into the night,” as the suspected thief sprang from Meyer’s property. Meyer then went back to bed.
But when Meyer awoke a couple hours later, he glanced outside and saw what he told police was a “black bag in the park.” After walking outside and having a closer look, he found the man he had supposedly shot at, lying motionless and face down.
Before calling 911, investigators claim Meyer had his wife contact a criminal defense attorney for legal counsel.
Police also learned neighbors had heard three gunshots around 5:15 a.m. — one shot more than Meyer admitted to firing. But during a sweep of the crime scene, a forensics team was initially unable to locate any shell casings. Meyer told detectives that he had discarded of them by throwing them in the trash.
After a police interview, Meyer was booked and charged with murder. He’s being held on a $150,000 bond, according to Dallas County court records.
The identity of the suspected thief hasn’t yet been released by law enforcement.
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.