December 19, 2014

Elyria
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Self-defense shooter to receive his gun back

ELYRIA — A county judge has ordered Elyria police to return a .45-caliber pistol to a Water Street man who used the weapon to shoot and kill an intruder in his home more than a year ago.

Lorain County Common Pleas Judge John Miraldi ruled that there was no reason not to return the gun to Jack Dillon, who was cleared of wrongdoing in the incident by a county grand jury last year.

Prosecutors didn’t oppose the return of the gun, which Dillon used to shoot 29-year-old Jeffrey Carson on Oct. 19, 2012, said Dillon’s attorney, Paul St. Marie.

“He was under no other disability that would prevent him from having a gun,” St. Marie said.

County Prosecutor Dennis Will has said the grand jury that reviewed the case determined the shooting fell under the “castle doctrine,” under which people are allowed to defend themselves within their own homes if they fear for their lives.

Dillon and his wife, Linda Dillon, both reported that they feared for their safety.

Dillon’s 52-inch flat-screen television was stolen the night before the shooting during a burglary at his house, police said.

The couple told police that they believed the burglar had entered the house through the front door. The next night, they left a window unlocked and set up a smaller television on their empty entertainment center.

The Dillons were sleeping on the floor of their dining room when Linda Dillon noticed a tapping noise. Jack Dillon told police he stood up and saw Carson holding the family’s Wii game system.

Jack Dillon reported that he told Carson to stop, but instead “he turned, came towards me and that’s when I fired at him.” Dillon said he fired six shots at Carson, who died from his injuries after being transported to the hospital.

An autopsy determined that Carson was shot five times and had alcohol, cocaine and Oxycodone in his system.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or bdicken@chroniclet.com.