The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

November 21, 2012

Oklahoma woman fires shot, scares off burglar

By Jeff Lehr

WYANDOTTE, Okla. — An Oklahoma woman scared off a stranger who was trying to enter her home Wednesday morning by firing a shot at him with a handgun.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department said the suspected burglar of the home on Cayuga Road near Wyandotte escaped injury but was captured a short time later in Missouri.

The woman reported that she was in bed asleep about 9 a.m. when she heard her doorbell ring and then someone knock on her door. She told sheriff’s deputies that she got up and looked out a window, and saw a stranger and a black Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck outside her home.

She and her 3-year-old son were alone in the house, and she feared the man might harm her or her child, she told deputies. She got her .22-caliber pistol out and chambered a round.

The man came back and got the locked outer door to the foyer of the house open, and started to get the locked entry door open as well, she told deputies. When she saw the knob turning, she flung the door open, pointed the gun at him and fired, she told deputies.

She told deputies that the man ran to the truck in which she observed a second occupant. They drove off, heading north toward U.S. Highway 60, she said. Deputies determined from surveillance video at the Indian Sky Casino that the truck turned east onto Highway 60, where deputies in Newton County, Mo., had been notified of the matter.

The truck was stopped about two miles into Missouri, and Nathan O. Lankford, 34, of Joplin, Mo., was arrested and accused of driving with a suspended license. A rifle was located in the truck, and a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm was added.

An Ottawa County judge signed a warrant with a $100,000 bond against Lankford on a charge of first-degree burglary, and his extradition to Oklahoma will be sought after disposition of charges in Missouri.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department said a 23-year-old woman believed to have been the other occupant of the vehicle was located at a nearby residence and detained for questioning. She had not been charged with any offense by late Wednesday afternoon.