Homeowner tells 11 News he confronted, held down suspect; suspect in critical condition

By  | 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - A man told police he and a possible burglar got into a confrontation, which left the suspect in critical condition.

"He didn't belong," said Craig Uehling. "You live here for so long you know who belongs and who doesn't belong."

Uehling says that's why he took action when he saw a suspicious-looking man leaving his driveway in the area of Ruskin Drive and Shelley Avenue in Colorado Springs Sunday night.

"I saw him leaving my house, then he goes into my neighbor's backyard and I don't want him breaking into my neighbor's home," Uehling said.

So Uehling said he took matters into his own hands.

"I followed him ... As soon as I called 911 and an operator answered, he started swinging on me. I didn't get a chance to talk to the operator because he started swinging."

Police say Uehling ultimately overpowered the alleged burglar.

"When police responded, they found [Uehling] on the ground with the suspect, holding him down." said Lt. Bret Poole with the Colorado Springs Police Department.

The suspect was unconscious when police got to him and remains in critical condition at a local hospital. It's unclear if he actually was or intending to commit a burglary. Police are investigating.

"This individual felt like he was doing the right thing," Poole said. "This individual just took it upon himself to try and restrain him - he thought he had broken into his neighbor's house or his property."

Police do not recommend taking matters into your own hands when encountering a suspected criminal.

"That's what our job is. Call the police when you have something like this and we'll respond," Poole said.

11 News also spoke to the suspect's family. Click here for more from the suspected burglar's family.