Home invasion victim fatally shoots suspect in struggle

Wednesday, June 24, 2009 at 10:58am
Staff reports

A 21-year-old shotgun-toting home invasion suspect was fatally wounded early Wednesday by one of his intended victims inside a home at 520 Moss Landing Drive, Metro Police say.

Elijah Minnard, who is last known to have lived on Mountain Valley Drive, was killed in the confrontation with residents Dennis Clay Nicholson, 22, and Lincoya Stephens, 25.

Police say Nicholson told detectives that he was confronted by Minnard, armed with a shotgun, and an accomplice Jeremie Thomas, 17, of North Second Street, armed with a pistol, as he arrived home shortly before 1 a.m.

Nicholson told police he was forced inside and held at gunpoint upstairs with Stephens who was already home. Thomas allegedly searched the downstairs.

Police say there was a scuffle but Stephens and Nicholson were able to get the shotgun away from Minnard. In the process Stephens was hit in the leg by a shotgun blast. Stephens allegedly pulled a pistol that was concealed in his waistband and fatally wounded Minnard, police said.

Stephens opened fire on Thomas, and he fled the residence, police said.

At 2:15 a.m., Thomas, allegedly with gun in hand, attempted to carjack a motorist on Hamilton Church Road. The driver accelerated and told an officer whom she spotted a short distance away what had just happened.

South Flex officers flooded the area and apprehended Thomas at Hickory Club Drive and Zelida Avenue. Thomas allegedly discarded his gun as the officers approached.

Although no drugs were found in the home, Thomas told detectives that he and Minnard came to the Moss Landing Drive home to commit a drug-related robbery, police said.

Police say Thomas admitted to his involvement and is charged at Juvenile Court with two counts of aggravated robbery, two counts of unlawful weapon possession, attempted criminal homicide, four counts of aggravated assault, and attempted aggravated robbery. Thomas is being held in juvenile detention pending a hearing.

Thomas is the only person facing charges at this point, but police say the investigation is continuing.

13 Comments on this post:

By: mblnnash on 6/24/09 at 1:23

Homemade justice!

By: Cookie47 on 6/24/09 at 5:33

Nice shooting!!! Justice handed out swiftly. Now we won't have to feed or house this scum for the next several years. Goodbye, Good riddance, Be gone.


By: southernpatriot on 6/24/09 at 11:57

nice shot. too bad they couldn't get the other one.

By: 615Bound on 6/25/09 at 6:20

Agreed, to bad the other got away.

By: global_citizen on 6/25/09 at 6:45

"Thomas is the only person facing charges at this point, but police say the investigation is continuing"

The other perpetrator has already been sentenced, swiftly and harshly.

By: HokeyPokey on 6/25/09 at 6:48

another cause celebré for the gun-nuts.

By: MetalMan on 6/25/09 at 8:33

"When a strong man, well armed, guards his own house, his possessions remain undisturbed." Luke 11:21

Swift justice is good justice, and gun control is being able to hit what you aim at. Too bad both perps aren't currently room temperature.

By: robertmack on 6/25/09 at 8:37

This is the way all home invasions should end, with the perp getting killed by the home owner or resident. This is good justice, he won't be invading anymore homes.

By: wiseguy on 6/25/09 at 9:08

Hmm ... drug related break in, pistol in the waist band ... sounds like bad guy vs bad guy to me. Nobody innocent here. Sadly we will never know the whole truth. The upside is one less bad guy. Down side is someone else feels there is a score to settle.

Hope Metro tracks the guns. All of them porbably stolen.

Gene pool certainly needs more chlorine.

By: EquinsuOcha on 6/25/09 at 11:44

Looks like all the stupid anti second amendment nuts wished this would haved turned out differently.

By: 615Bound on 6/25/09 at 5:05

Do your research "Wiseguy" his home was broke into 3 weeks prior.. The media at first said it was drug related.. them later corrected themselves and said no drugs were found in the home..

By: tamshac on 6/25/09 at 11:17

Every victim has a mother, father, sister, brother, grandmother, aunts, uncles and friends who are all mourning the loss of their life. It's easy to judge a book by its cover but please have some respect for ALL of those who are affected by the loss. I've known the victim since he was born and it's very unfortunate that he lost his life the way that he did. Despite what impression the photo gives he was a very smart, handsome and lovable young man who just made the wrong choices. He was his mother's only child and she is devastated. She is a strong christian woman and will get through this with the help of God. I love and miss Elijah and there are many others who do as well.

By: Halsey58 on 8/19/10 at 12:54

Elijah Minnard told Stephens, the one he was pointing the gun at, "You know what we are going to do to you after we are done?" Stephens stated he had never seen such hatred in a mans eyes. On 'I survived' they never mentioned the race of the two perps.
This was a robbery/hate crime. Where was all that love? I guess Minnard made a bad choice. Somebody did not love him enough. So sad...