A Washington state homeowner caught two burglars who had broken into his residence. And as he held them at gunpoint, he ordered them to their knees and to call 911 on themselves — using their own phone.
The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s office is applauding the way he calmly handled himself in a tense situation, according to local station KATU Channel 2 News.
The south Washington home where Bill Lahti has lived most of his life was first settled by his great-grandparents after having moved from Montana years.
“Yeah, I mean one day he said, ‘Yeah, some of this will be yours,’” Lahti told the station. “Yeah, he kept his word,” recalling a conversation with his grandfather.
When home invaders broke in, Lahti went into action.
“I kept coming back periodically to check in,” Lahti told KATU. “So, Monday night, I roll up and there’s their truck backed up to the front door in the yard. [The] door was about — probably — four inches open. I could see the light through there. So, I came out there, jumped out of my truck, kicked the door open and there they were.”
Lahti, gun in hand, told the two men to get on their knees. Not only did he detain them until deputies arrived, he says his phone was not working, so he had one of the men call 911 on themselves. A spokesperson for Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office says the citizens’ arrest is an example of the benefits of someone arming themselves safely, legally and with proper training.
Cowlitz County sheriff’s deputies have identified the alleged burglars as 21-year-old Jared Barker and 18-year-old Aaron Vigna.
The truck that was backed up to Lahti’s home read, “College Pro Painters” on the side. It turns out that Barker owns a local College Pro Painters franchise.
Watch the report, via KATU News.
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