PORTLAND, Oregon — A mother who returned to her Portland home with her two children early Sunday morning shot and killed an intruder who was inside, police said.
Tara-Alexis Ford, 33, found a stranger in one of her children’s bedrooms inside her home about 1:45 a.m. Armed with a handgun, she shot and killed the man, who has been identified as David Daniel McCrary, 59, from Gresham.
The Oregon State Medical Examiner determined that McCrary died of a single gunshot wound.
“I would be scared. I would be scared,” said neighbor Linda Ternes-Kent. “But she had to do what she had to do. I would have done the same thing.”
Detectives don’t know why McCrary, who has no significant criminal history, broke into Ford’s home. There is no connection between Ford and McCrary, and he is not from the neighborhood. A recent report indicates that McCrary may have dealt with mental health issues.
According to detectives, McCrary broke into Ford’s home through a back window. He was found by Ford in the bedroom of her 10-year-old daughter, where the shooting happened. Ford’s daughter and her 5-year-old son were in a different bedroom at the time.
Neighbors who spoke with KGW say they think Ford did the right thing.
“I would be scared. I would be scared,” said neighbor Linda Ternes-Kent. “But she had to do what she had to do. I would have done the same thing.” Another neighbor said that before Ford moved in the place had squatters in and out of there.
The Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill will review all the evidence in this case. Charges will be brought against Ford if he believes she did not act out of self-defense. For this mother, all she was doing was protecting her two children and herself from the unknown. This man broke into her home and invaded her life. There should be no question if it was out of self-defense. The fact that the police have made it clear that he “broke in” is a clear enough indication that his intentions were not good.
She had no way of knowing how far he was willing to take his criminal actions that day. Now she is being treated as a criminal for doing what is natural as a mother, parent, and a human being. Protecting your life and the lives of those you love. This is part of what is wrong with our justice system. There are more rights for the criminals than there are for the law-abiding citizens. The fact that this man has no prior record means nothing, at some point every criminal has no prior record. Good or bad we all start somewhere, why drag this woman through more than she has already been through. We can only hope that the ties that Rod Underhill has to people like Gabby Gifford’s do not play a role in his decision in this case.