Escazú expat shoots it out with and kills armed intruder

A long-time Escazú expat faced down a gang of masked robbers Friday night and killed one of the intruders in a shootout.

The gun play took place at the Bello Horizonte home of the man identified by the Judicial Investigating Organization by the last name of Nicholas. The investigating agency said the expat was home about 9:30 p.m. when he heard a noise at the metal gate to the home. He investigated to see at least three men trying to gain entry.

The expat withdrew to the interior of the home where he obtained a pistol. Judicial investigators said there was an exchange of shots in the living room of the house. The expat shot the intruder twice in the chest and one in the right arm, said the judicial police report.

The intruder died in the house and his companions fled in
an awaiting vehicle. He was identified by the last name of Barrantes. Judicial agents said he was 20 years old. There was no indication that the expat was detained, and agents appear to be treating the case as self defense.

The Laura Chinchilla administration has tightened the rules under which expats can have weapons. Currently only persons with permanent residency can obtain a firearm license. That means rentistas and pensionados can not have weapons legally, although many of them do have one for home protection.

The situation was different in La Uruca, also Friday night. As the operator of a pulpería or small store was closing up for the night, three men with guns approached. That was about 8 p.m. The 64-year-old store operator who has the last name of Fernández resisted the efforts by the men to enter his store, said the Judicial Investigating Organization. The victim tried to take a gun away from one of the crooks, agents said, He was shot in the hip and was recovering at Hospital México.

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