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Gun in hand = burglar pushing daisies

Originally ran here as:
"Off-duty officer fatally shoots man who broke in, police say"

An off-duty St. Louis police officer fatally shot an armed intruder he encountered in his home in the 4000 block of McDonald Avenue about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, authorities said.

Homicide detectives, who investigate all police-related shootings, said their preliminary findings indicated that Patrolman Edward Brown's use of deadly force was justified.

Brown, 32, assigned to the 4th District, has been with the department for nine years.

The identity of the dead man, believed to be in his late teens or early 20s, was not known. He carried no identification, but police said he carried loot taken in a burglary next door.

The homicide detectives gave this account:

Brown arrived at his home and noticed a kitchen window was wide open, with the drapes flapping in the breeze, and saw that his bedroom had been ransacked.

He opened a door leading to the basement and encountered a young man on the landing who appeared to be heading upstairs.

Brown, with his pistol drawn, hollered, "Stop! Policeman!" But the man aimed a small-caliber handgun at him, and the officer fired a single shot, hitting the intruder in the chest.

Police said Brown's neighborhood has suffered many recent break-ins. The home of Brown's next-door neighbor was burglarized while she was away Tuesday morning; police said her cell phone and its charger were recovered from the dead man's pocket.

Brown's home had been burglarized about six weeks ago, police said. That time, his television, DVD player, some jewelry and other items were taken.

Reporter Bill Bryan:
Phone: 314-340-8950

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