An armed robber didn’t know what he was getting into when he crept into former CNN anchor Lynne Russell and her husband’s motel room—the man was shot dead during a gunfight.
According to a New York Post report on Wednesday, Russell and her husband Chuck de Caro, 65, were four days into a road trip from Washington, D.C. to California, staying the night in a Motel 6 in Albuquerque, when she left the room to grab something from the car around 11:30pm Tuesday.
That’s when the intruder slipped in.
“I opened the door and he materialized out of nowhere; he was inside,” Russell—the first woman to ever solo-anchor a primetime news show—said. “And he pushed me into the room and onto the bed and closed the door.”
The gunman demanded the couple’s money and valuables. De Caro emerged from the shower totally nude and tried to persuade the robber to calm down.
De Caro, a former special forces officer whose current job is as a national security strategist, stood in front of a nightstand where the couple had placed their .35-caliber pistols, which they legally kept with them for self-defense.
“We tried to calm the man, ask him not to point the gun because we really couldn’t think what we could give him,” Russell told The Post. “It felt to me he was used to doing this, that whatever happened wouldn’t bother him.”
The gunman shot at De Caro after grabbing a briefcase, and De Caro returned fire and took cover behind some furniture.
Russell told The Post, “It was a gun battle, and Chuck was bleeding heavily, but he didn’t stop firing because the man was firing on him, and he was looking for me.”
During the exchange, De Caro was shot twice in the abdomen and once in the leg. He fared better than the thug who tried to rob them. After fleeing the room, the man collapsed in the parking lot.
When police officers arrived, they found him dead from his wounds. According to The Post, police said the shooting was justified.
Russell said that officers had to “keep me from going over to that man’s body and kicking the s–t out of him.”
De Caro was rushed to University of New Mexico Hospital, where he is recovering from surgery. He said his wounds “hurt like hell.”
Russell called her husband a hero who saved their lives. “I just admire him so much,” she said.
De Caro told The Post, “I was determined to save my dream girl’s life — even if it cost my own.”
It could have turned out tragic, but Twitter users recognize that self-defense is the best defense and it’s always good when the “good guy with a gun wins!”
— Lynne Russell CNNHLN (@LynneRussellCNN) June 12, 2015
@LynneRussellCNN if the media and liberals had their way with guns there wouldn’t be a happy ending here. Hoping for a speedy recovery
— joseph smith (@foundingfathe11) July 2, 2015
— yanky (@longislandyanky) July 2, 2015
@LynneRussellCNN I am so happy you safe. I am more happy your husband has a gun. This proves that owning a weapon can save your life.
— vote (@braniff71) July 1, 2015
@LynneRussellCNN So, So, So glad/happy he had his weapon…thank god for the 2nd amendment….and also happy you are both ok
— Larry D Pruitt (@retceo) July 1, 2015
@LynneRussellCNN God Bless you and your husband. He is a true hero. America needs more like him!
— FM2122 (@FMorgigno) July 1, 2015
@LynneRussellCNN Many prayers for your husbands speedy recovery and you also… GOOD GUY WITH A GUN WINS!!! YOU HAVE TO LOVE IT!!
— theavgjoe.com (@luciocastignano) July 1, 2015