A 78-year-old man has been arrested for murder after two suspected burglars broke into his home in south-east London on Wednesday, the Mirror reported.
Officers were called to the quiet Hither Green neighborhood around 1:00 a.m. after receiving calls of a reported burglary at the home of Richard Osborn-Brooks.
One of the suspects allegedly forced the homeowner into his kitchen and threatened him with a screw driver, according to Scotland Yard.
Osborn-Brooks was apparently able to take the screwdriver from the burglar and attack him with it.
“A struggle had ensued in the kitchen during which one of the males found inside the property sustained a stab wound to the upper body,” according to police.
The 38-year-old suspect died from the stab wound, police said.
Osborn-Brooks “was initially arrested on suspicion of GBH while murder cops investigate the fatal incident. He was later further arrested on suspicion of murder,” the Mirror reported.
GBH refers to “grievous bodily harm” in English criminal law.
According to police, Osborn-Brooks suffered bruising to his arms from the scuffle and is still in custody.
The other suspect is still at large.
“I feel terrible for the man that was burgled. He doesn’t deserve to be punished for defending himself,” said local resident Adam Lake, according to BBC.
The BBC explained that the guidelines of the Crown Prosecution Service — the public prosecuting agency that conducts criminal prosecutions in England and Wales — state that “You are given greater protection under the law if force is used to protect yourself or others when dealing with a burglar or trespasser on your property.”
“The CPS says if you have acted in reasonable self-defence, as described above, and the intruder dies you will still have acted lawfully.”
According to Reuters, a “violent scourge” has taken over the city of London, with more murders in London than New York City in the month of March.
“British politicians and police are increasingly expressing concern about London’s rising murder rate, which is driven by a surge in knife crime,” Reuters reported. “Of the 47 murders in London so far this year, 31 have been committed with knives.”
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