The licensed gun owner shot at least once early Tuesday after seeing three men trying to tow away his car, possibly just to rip out its catalytic converter, police told the Philadelphia Inquirer.
The trio tried to flee in a gray Honda Accord, but it crashed into a school bus. Two of the thieves fled, but the third one was pronounced dead after being taken to a local hospital, the report said.
The shooting victim was identified as Satario Natividad, 51, by grieving relatives who demanded charges for the gunman, who was questioned by homicide detectives.
“He did not have to come out and shoot him,” one of Natividad’s lifelong friends, Tanya Dunn, told the paper.
“It was a car! All he had to do is call the police. … You don’t shoot someone out in the street over a car.”
Chief Inspector Frank Vanore said the investigation was being led by homicide detectives, but it was too early to make a decision on whether the shooting was justified.
A firearm was found in the crashed car along with tools and catalytic converters, police said while walking back an earlier announcement that it had been a carjacking.
Natividad’s widow, Sherell, was angered at the suggestion, asking, “How could it be a carjacking when no one was in the car?”
“They shot him. They killed him,” she told the local paper.
The fatal shooting came just days after a 60-year-old grandfather allegedly shot a 16-year-old boy who pulled a gun on him and fired several shots during an attempted carjacking in the city.
The grandad, Oliver Neal, was licensed to carry and was not charged over last Thursday’s shooting that left his teen would-be carjacker hospitalized, the Inquirer said.