In Chicago, police and prosecutors are dealing with a shooting in an unexpected way. Margaret Matthews, 68, had long complained about a 12-year-old who has been “terrorizing” her. When the boy joined friends in throwing bricks through her windows, she shot him. Police, however, did not charge her — instead charging the boy.
Another boy, 13, is also charged as a juvenile misdemeanor aggravated assault to a senior citizen.
Neighbors told police that the boy has been leading a group of kids who have been terrorizing the whole block.
Other neighbors, however, said that the boy told them that he was just walking by when the woman shot him and insist that he is not a bad kid.
We have seen these type of controversies in “castle doctrine” or “make my day” jurisdictions. However, Chicago is not such a jurisdiction. Courts have generally required a commensurate level of force to be used in self defense actions. The age of the individual can factor into this determination. Yet, I have never seen a brick through a window treated as justification for the use of potentially lethal force.