Philly Mayor, Police Commissioner Condemn 'Vigilante Justice' After Small Business Owner Shoots, Kills Looter

Posted: Jun 03, 2020 8:26 AM
Philly Mayor, Police Commissioner Condemn 'Vigilante Justice' After Small Business Owner Shoots, Kills Looter

Source: AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw paid lip service to the right of citizens to defend their businesses and lives on Tuesday during a press conference, but in the next breath expressed how disturbed they were that they would take matters into their own hands.

The statement came after a gun store owner in the city shot and killed a looter.

The 67-year-old owner told cops he spent the night at Firing Line Inc. on South Front Street after a recent attempted burglary at his business, CBS Philadelphia reports.

“He was inside of his gun shop overnight because someone had attempted to break in over the past few days,” Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small told the station.

The owner, Greg Isabella, opened fire with a Bushmaster M4 rifle, police told the Philadelphia Inquirer.

A group of four men used bolt cutters to cut a lock before forcing open a door to the gun range at about 4:15 a.m., police told CBS Philadelphia.

The suspects proceeded to a second floor, where an armed Isabella was waiting after seeing them moments earlier on surveillance cameras, the station reports.

“One of the males pointed a gun at the owner, and that’s when the owner of the gun shop, who was in possession of one of his guns, fired several shots, striking the one male at least one time in the head,” Small said. (NY Post)

While customers praised the owner, Kenney and Outlaw appeared to condemn him. 

“We do not endorse or condone any form of vigilante justice or taking the law into one’s own hands,” said Outlaw, who encouraged people to protect themselves by “safe, nonviolent” methods where possible. She was, however, forced to admit that “there are very clear laws that allow us to protect ourselves and our property from harm.”

Kenney, meanwhile, said he was “deeply troubled” by the incident. 

If only more officials were like Polk County, Florida, Sheriff Grady Judd.