Milan man holds home invader at gunpoint; calls 911

There are few things in this world more dangerous that breaking into an armed ex-U.S. Marine’s house with his family sleeping upstairs.
Emil Whitis
Sep 29, 2012


Jesse Murr, 29, learned that lesson early Thursday morning when, in a drunken stupor, he busted the glass out of his neighbor’s back porch door, reached through the jagged hole and unlocked the door, then walked in at about 12:30 a.m. in the 100 block of Strecker Road.

From his bedroom upstairs Scott Stith heard the crash, cocked his loaded Springfield Armory Model 1911 .45 caliber pistol and charged down stairs. Without a sound he trained the weapon on Murr’s silhouette.

“I’d ran that scenario though my head probably 1000s of times and every time it comes out the same with the bad guy lying dead on the floor,” Stith said.

But he didn’t squeeze. With teenage sons Stith couldn’t be 100 percent sure of his target.

“Before I got down there I thought ‘I have to make sure I’m not getting ready to kill someone I love,'” he said. “I had to make sure this guy was an enemy not just a messed up loved one.”

Stith broke the silence.

“Do you know how close to death you are?” he said.

The voice that replied came from a stranger.

Keep reading this story in Saturday's Register.

Editor's Note: The 911 tape posted with this story contains profanity. User discretion is advised.



Guess Mr. Stith was correct, The guy broke into the wrong house. It could have turned out much much, much worse though and Mr. Murr needs to thank god he wasnt shot outright after the intitial contact.


I agree Randy. I am glad he did not kill the guy on his property. Even when it is justified, living with the fact that you killed someone is not easy for everyone. The marine may be able to deal with it but the family may have a tougher time. He handled it perfectly.


I would have pulled the trigger!!


Perfectly handled. Also, I believe that in the state of Ohio, you cannot shoot someone for simply B&E. You have to be in immediate physical threat in order to shoot.


I have to disagree with you as a gun owner and handgun licensee in Ohio we have What is called castle law which means that the state of Ohio law views a burglar as someone who intends to cause great bodily harm or death when they decide to enter your home which means you can use deadly force without legal reprocussion


No such thing as ex Marines, only Former Marines.

Once a Marine, always a Marine.

Semper Fi


Once a Marine, Always a Marine: This truism is now the official motto of the Marine Corps League. The origin of the statement is credited to a gung-ho Marine Corps master sergeant, Paul Woyshner. During a barroom argument he shouted, "Once a Marine, always a Marine!" MSgt. Woyshner was right. Once the title "U.S. Marine" has been earned, it is retained. There are no ex-Marines or former-Marines. There are (1) active duty Marines, (2) retired Marines, (3) reserve Marines, and (4) Marine veterans. Nonetheless, once one has earned the title, he remains a Marine for life.


I beleive the terminaology used was "You broke into the wrong MO%^ER F^$%ing house of a Ex Jar head MO$%er F&$%ER" Which is as close as you can come to perfect language for someone breaking in.


Actually, under the circumstances, the language was pretty tame...I'm pretty sure I would have used a few p words and a couple of c words and probably a few no one ever heard of before. :)

OH, that and I would have aimed for the crotch first. :) :) If the prospect of getting your c*** blowed off doesn't sober ya up, well then ya ain't playing with a full deck, anyway.

All's well that ends well. I hope Mr Stith still has his combat boots so he can kick this A$$ wipe a few times.


MBR, no. Ohio is no longer a "back against the wall" state (thank god). You must feel threatened, yes, but common sense dictates someone breaking into your home in the middle of the night is and of itself a threat.

HulkHogan, yeah, I probably would have pulled the trigger, too, but I don't have kids living with me that might get up for a midnight snack! It sounds to me like Mr. Stith handled this situation perfectly in just about every way.

Deertracker, I worked with a former cop once who'd shot and killed a man in the line of duty. He asked me if I thought I could live with myself if I killed another human being regardless of the provocation. I just looked at him and said, "Well, at least I'd be alive to think about it!" For the record, he was able to live with himself after the shooting just fine...

And for the inevitable gun grabbers who probably won't comment on this story (or will only say how lucky it is the bad guy wasn't shot, or how tragic it would have been if he had been, and how this story is really an exception to the rule because it was a Marine who knew how to handle a gun, or...well, YOU know the usual nonsense they spew): Look! A gun saved a life, and nobody died! Happens on average between one and two MILLION times a year*. Interesting, ain't it.

* Google Gary Kleck, a FL college professor who USED to be anti-gun until he conducted a very broad national study that proved guns SAVE lives and property in overwhelming numbers.


He would have a knife in his hand,and be all the way thru the window !I don't have time for a bunch of hearings !


Injuries and deaths due to firearms in the home.

Kellermann AL, Somes G, Rivara FP, Lee RK, Banton JG.


Center for Injury Control, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA.



Determine the relative frequency with which guns in the home are used to injure or kill in self-defense, compared with the number of times these weapons are involved in an unintentional injury, suicide attempt, or criminal assault or homicide.


We reviewed the police, medical examiner, emergency medical service, emergency department, and hospital records of all fatal and nonfatal shootings in three U.S. cities: Memphis, Tennessee; Seattle, Washington; and Galveston, Texas.


During the study interval (12 months in Memphis, 18 months in Seattle, and Galveston) 626 shootings occurred in or around a residence. This total included 54 unintentional shootings, 118 attempted or completed suicides, and 438 assaults/homicides. Thirteen shootings were legally justifiable or an act of self-defense, including three that involved law enforcement officers acting in the line of duty. For every time a gun in the home was used in a self-defense or legally justifiable shooting, there were four unintentional shootings, seven criminal assaults or homicides, and 11 attempted or completed suicides.


Guns kept in homes are more likely to be involved in a fatal or nonfatal accidental shooting, criminal assault, or suicide attempt than to be used to injure or kill in self-defense.

Mr Bean

You got more BArbara Striesand than a Christmas Turkey----you should change your moniker to BS---what a bunch of horse hockie!!!


Ah, yes, the old Kellermann chestnut. You'd better do a little more research. This study was long ago debunked, and even those who conducted it eventually acknowledged the flawed methodology used. Among other issues, the data points (those "participants" included in the study) were inappropriately selected based almost solely on criteria that already showed what those conducting the study wanted it to show (note again the word "selected"), and the statistics managed rather than merely analyzed. Look it up. Even Kellermann now dismisses the study "results" (and I use the term loosely). Again, google is your friend...


"Ah,yes the old Kellerman chestnut", Kellerman stands by his study. The people trying to debunk it are gun nuts who only give credence to studies that support their pre-concieved ideas. Kellermen first notice this trend while treated victims in the emergency room where he works as a trauma surgeon. When you're listening to Glen Beck in you mother's basement you might keep in mind that he's insane.

Mother hen

If in ur home it falls under no duty to retreat act. Meaning ur back is againt the wall u had no other choice.


Wow, one cool headed Marine[former],Cool headed , cautious, smart,


u forgot to say Model Human being !


Once a Marine, Always a Marine: This truism is now the official motto of the Marine Corps League. The origin of the statement is credited to a gung-ho Marine Corps master sergeant, Paul Woyshner. During a barroom argument he shouted, "Once a Marine, always a Marine!" MSgt. Woyshner was right. Once the title "U.S. Marine" has been earned, it is retained. There are no ex-Marines or former-Marines. There are (1) active duty Marines, (2) retired Marines, (3) reserve Marines, and (4) Marine veterans. Nonetheless, once one has earned the title, he remains a Marine for life

hmm really

Welcome to my home. By the way, that locked door that you just busted through was for your protection- NOT MINE.


Thumbs up on this man protecting his family! And thank God for the right to bear arms!


Not all marines are billy bad as- ,some can't handle it ...


Let me guess. You are Army or Navy.


Lemme guess, You think all marine attack people for no reason? Gimmie a break idiot. If you are a marine and think beating up a cab driver is cool you really need to rethink things.
Keeping your cool and being a man is what they are taught. The Army and Navy know this as well. Never accuse someone of such a bad dig as army or navy we have more respect.


You must be Coast Guard.


Must be a hippie.


Definitely Air Force.


this man knows wassup !...first rule is know what ur shooting at ! know ur target .. hats off to Mr. Stith !!!!!!!!

Seen it All

Great Job Mr. Stith!! I am wondering about this neighbor on the 100 block of Strecker. drunken stupor...could he be the same guy that called the Sheriff to take him back to jail because he didn't like the people at his house? Also, the same guy who pushed his pregnant wife a week later? For not too many homes on the 100 block of Strecker, there sure have been a lot of calls there the past few weeks.


Once a Marine, always a Marine. Semper Fi Mr. Stith!


Castle law. good thing for the drunken moron ....Mr Stith was thinking calm and clear, and showed common sense. Well done!! This could have turned out so bad. Hopefully, he can teach his neighbor a lesson or two. The guy sounds like he needs it.


A BEAUTIFUL THING...AN INFANTRY MARINE WITH A .45 COCKED AND LOCKED...WITH CHL...One lucky intruder...Drunk and stupid...could have easily be killed for his stupidity...this is why Ohio has chl and castle doctrine laws. ECSO was only a couple of minutes away...Could have been in Vermilion, or Huron or ? Said it before, will certainally say it again... WHEN SECONDS COUNT, HELP IS ONLY MINUTES AWAY.


Ohio does have the Castle Doctrine which assumes if someone breaks into your home, your life is threatened. The Marine acted admirably. Sam Adams you state "I probably would have pulled the trigger, too" Sounds like the threat had ended when the intruder saw the why would you have shot. My issue is not with the guns but with the people who have them.


Saying u don't have a problem with guns just the people who have then is like saying you don't have a problem with cars just the people who drive them. You anti gun freaks think because criminals do horrible thing with a gun which is an inanimate object that everyone who owns a gun doesn't know how to properly use or carry it. So I guess since 13.8 percent of all licensed drivers are convicted of OVI it's safe to assume you are or will be one of those nearly 14% under your standard of assumption correct?


The guns nuts are the precise people that shouldn't own them. Daydreaming about having the oppurtunity to shoot someone legally is a dangerous proposition. Wanna be toughguys, dreaming of being tv heroes.


To clarify, I have a very simple criteria for shoot/don't shoot, and that is this: If the intruder sees the gun and turns to run, I will NOT shoot him or her in the back. I'll still have the police on the phone and will still hope to press charges, but I won't shoot. If the intruder sees the gun and keeps right on coming, I'll pull the trigger long before he or she gets close enough to take it from me.

In this particular scenario, the Marine spoke up. I might or might not do that much. It would depend on how close the intruder was to me at the time. Fire willy nilly? No. But I'd also point out that those people who end up being shot by their own firearm are those who DON'T fire in a timely manner.

Regardless of my own criteria, neither you nor anybody else has to worry about whether I have a gun in my home or not. Unless, of course, you decide to break in...


I don't have children in the house anymore. In the middle of the night, if I heard a sound and saw a moving shadow, I'd shoot first and then turn the lights on to see where the holes were. You see, in the dark, I don't know if he has a gun pointed at me and is about to squeeze the trigger or not. To survive I have to do what I have gone over in my mind countless times. Size up the situation, pick a plan and execute, all in about 2 seconds.
Semper Fi


Being neither ex Marine,Army,Navy or Air Force I wouldn't have the skill or now how to decide, but we now have a gun based on what all of you have said of late and given what has happened here in Sandusky. So breaking glass and moving figures in the dark would not set my mind at ease at all. We don't have kids at home either. Intent is intent, no matter how you look at it and those we WANT in our house have keys, so to break the glass is a pretty good indicator to me that it isn't someone with an invite.

We would probably ask once "who is it". Given no satisfactory answer, the next sound you hear is going to be the sound of a gunshot. B&E or not, that moving figure is going down. They aren't invited and since their answer won't be satisfactory due to pure silence, they get what they bad, so said. I doubt they came calling or to use the facilites or for a cup of coffee. Enough is enough. Breaking into people's houses is not something you do for the heck of it and defending yourself is everyone's right. (or so many of you have said over and over again until you convinced us it was the right thing to do).
Law or no law, if they break in, they aren't coming to pay a nice visit that is for sure, so they can suffer the consequences of the "not invited" gun we have now. It sucks to be them. Next time, ring the door bell.


just a reminder to the criminals, out here in the country, most of the time, we're the ones who are armed and dangerous.


exactly...we have to be. The police cannot be everywhere at once.


Robbers beware of homeowners carrying guns when there is a break in. The kid almost got himself shot. Maybe now the kid will lay off the booze and pay more attention to his surroundings.

Phil Packer

Emil, if I made that many mistakes in one project at work, I'd be looking for a new job. Well done.

tired of stupidy

jesse murr never had a lot to work with it runs deep in the family genes,this is your wake up call. jess change your life.

he said she said

I just want to thank Mr. Stith for his service and loyalty to this country.

Once a Marine, always a Marine; there is no ex in it.

Semper Fi

Cracked Cherry

The castle doctrine also applies to your vehicle in the state of Ohio.


Thanks for the info ...good to know.


I've known Scotty for years, and would expect nothing less of him in that type of situation. Hope that sends a message out, because more and more home owners are buying weapons for self protection. Your a very lucky man Murr.


Yep, I agree Mr. Stith did a fine job - as for the drunken twank ...hmm, NOT so much.