Tuesday, September 15, 2009

85-Year-Old Austin Man Charged with Shooting City Workers

For generations, people have joked about the stereotypical grumpy old man who is always yelling at the kids in his neighborhood to get off his lawn. Many either fear turning into such a person as they age or revel in the idea of earning, through reaching a certain level of seniority, the right to yell at the people who have always caused you grief. In one Austin neighborhood this week, residents learned of their own very real version of the elderly man who protects his property to extensive ends. Unfortunately, in this case violence resulted and criminal charges have been filed.

Henry Ralph Schots, age 85, heard workers who had been hired by the city of Austin to clear brush. He thought that the seven men participating in this clean-up effort were trespassing on his property. Schots fired a total of eight shots at the workers, with some of the bullets coming close to causing harm. When the workers left the scene to meet with the police officers who had been summoned, Schots followed them in his car and was confronted by the officers. A search of his car revealed the gun that had been used against the workers.

Schots now faces seven felony counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. If convicted on all counts, he could spend the rest of his life in prison. At this time, he remains in jail awaiting the next steps in his legal process.

If you believe that people are trespassing on your property and your life is not in imminent danger, the solution should not be to make an attempt on their lives. Instead, unless you are afraid or unable to do so, I suggest that you try talking to the people first. However, if you should choose to aim your gun at innocent city workers, you will need a lawyer. The law offices of Bertolino LLP has attorneys who are experienced in the area of criminal defense. If you are facing criminal charges, please contact our Austin, Houston, or San Anotonio office today and let's discuss how we can help.

No comments: