74-Year-Old Kansas Woman Fatally Shoots Burglar, Then Has Heart Attack: Police

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Authorities say a 74-year-old Kansas woman shot and killed an intruder while on the phone with a 911 dispatcher and then had a heart attack.

The Kansas City Star reports that Leavenworth County Attorney Todd Thompson said Thursday that the woman is recovering and is expected to be OK. He says she “obviously” won’t face charges over the death of 41-year-old Ralph Byrd Jr., who broke into her Leavenworth home early Saturday.

Thompson said she had reported an attempted burglary of her home about a week before. After that, she obtained a .22-caliber handgun that she took with her to bed at night.

Leavenworth Police Major Dan Nicodemus says the case was “pretty cut and dried.” Court records show Byrd had been convicted in 2017 of an attempted home burglary.

The suspect’s younger brother told KTLA sister station WDAF in Kansas City that the family is not upset at the woman.

“She protected herself, and our family is not mad at her,” Elvis Byrd said. “Our hearts go out to her because she did what any one of us would have done.”

He said his brother became “consumed” by drugs after his wife left him and a father figure died, and he would rob and burglarize others to support the habit, the station reported.

“[Drugs] controlled him. They took him over, and that is all he cared about. He would do anything he had to do to get high,” Elvis Byrd said.

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