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Teen fatally shot when he mistakenly went into wrong house

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Teen fatally shot when he mistakenly went into wrong house

Family members hold photos of Caleb Gordley in Sterling, Va. (Associated Press/Ann Heisenfelt)

A 16-year-old who lived in Loudoun County, Va., was shot and killed when he accidentally entered the wrong house.

Caleb Gordley, a popular athlete who had been living in a brick house with his parents and sister for about a year, sneaked out of his house to go to a party with friends after he'd been grounded for not cleaning his room.

When he returned around 2 a.m. he slipped into the house he thought was his. Friends said he had been drinking and mistook his neighbor's similar house two doors down for his own and climbed in through the back window.

When the burglar alarm sounded, the homeowner treated Caleb as an intruder, and shot and killed him.

Caleb's father, Shawn Gordley, told The Washington Post, "They have the exact same staircase as us, the exact same carpet. Caleb clearly thought he was in his own house." He added, "He probably stumbled around and was just trying to go to his room."

At Sterling Park High school in Sterling, Va., students mourned the loss of a talented athlete. The coach of the basketball team, Mike Koscinski, who had advanced Caleb to varsity this year, said of the junior, "He was the hype man. He got everyone hyped up before games."

A statement from the family reads, "Between the darkness and him being under the influence of alcohol, his mistake turned into the ultimate tragedy."

Police are continuing to investigate the shooting, but Virginia law gives "wide latitude to people who fear for their safety when someone breaks into their homes," according to The Washington Post.

 

 

by on Mar. 19, 2013 at 2:50 PM
Replies (31-40):
talia-mom
by Gold Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 6:45 PM

I think he does feel bad.

But no, I don't think doing something to defend your family if you feel in danger is either morally or ethically bad.


Maybe you are willing to take the chance and askm "hey are you just a drunk teen accidentally in my house."  I am not.

You can do something ethically and morally right and still feel bad about it.


Quoting canadianmom1974:

How is shooting an innocent, unarmed person not morally and ethically wrong? If it weren't wrong, why is everyone talking about how badly this man must be feeling?

The kid made a stupid mistake, everyone has made stupid mistakes - I've made lots of stupid mistakes. Luckily I've been around people who didn't decide to shoot me in response.


Quoting talia-mom:

How is what he did morally and ethically wrong if he feared this was a person intent on harming his family?




Quoting canadianmom1974:

Ummm, shooting an innocent, unarmed person?



I also find the whole attitude of 'shoot first, ask questions later' to be morally suspect.




Quoting talia-mom:

What did he do that is morally and ethically wrong?







Quoting canadianmom1974:

Ridiculous. A kid made a stupid mistake and is now dead. Legally that homeowner may not have done anything wrong, but morally, ethically? I wonder how hard it is to live with the knowledge you shot an innocent person?







btamilee
by Silver Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 6:58 PM
3 moms liked this

I can't speak for anyone else, but I am not saying that it was morally or ethically wrong, and the reason I feel badly for the man isn't because of either of those reasons.  As for the kids making a stupid mistake...he made more than ONE mistake that night, he was grounded and disobeyed his parents by sneaking out of the house, he then proceeded to attend a party which involved underage drinking, and then....in his attempt to sneak back into his own house.....made another very tragic mistake.  Several mistakes led to this awful event.  We don't really know what happened once he entered the wrong house, I just don't think this man was sitting at the window.....waiting for an easy target at 2 am. 

Quoting canadianmom1974:

How is shooting an innocent, unarmed person not morally and ethically wrong? If it weren't wrong, why is everyone talking about how badly this man must be feeling?

The kid made a stupid mistake, everyone has made stupid mistakes - I've made lots of stupid mistakes. Luckily I've been around people who didn't decide to shoot me in response.


Quoting talia-mom:

How is what he did morally and ethically wrong if he feared this was a person intent on harming his family?

 

 


Quoting canadianmom1974:

Ummm, shooting an innocent, unarmed person?



I also find the whole attitude of 'shoot first, ask questions later' to be morally suspect.




Quoting talia-mom:

What did he do that is morally and ethically wrong?







Quoting canadianmom1974:

Ridiculous. A kid made a stupid mistake and is now dead. Legally that homeowner may not have done anything wrong, but morally, ethically? I wonder how hard it is to live with the knowledge you shot an innocent person?


 


 


 

soonergirl980
by Silver Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:04 PM

Sad. Unfortunately the consequences of his actions led to his death.

soonergirl980
by Silver Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:06 PM
3 moms liked this

If someone breaks into my home at 2 am they will be shot. A person breaking into my home at 2 am is not innocent and I will not risk my family.


Quoting canadianmom1974:

Ridiculous. A kid made a stupid mistake and is now dead. Legally that homeowner may not have done anything wrong, but morally, ethically? I wonder how hard it is to live with the knowledge you shot an innocent person?



tambrathegreat
by on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:12 PM
1 mom liked this

That's so tragic.

canadianmom1974
by Gold Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:16 PM
2 moms liked this
I really, I mean really, honestly, don't understand the culture where the automatic response is to pull a gun and shoot blindly.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
dawnie1
by #1 Raider fan on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:24 PM
1 mom liked this

I'm just so dang sorry for everyone involved.

futureshock
by Ruby Member on Mar. 19, 2013 at 7:30 PM
3 moms liked this

It is sad that neighbors don't even know each other any longer.  If they had been acquainted maybe the homeowner would have recognized this kid and brought him home.

EireLass
by Ruby Member on Mar. 20, 2013 at 12:07 PM
3 moms liked this

We moved to this location 1 year ago. We have only met 1 neighbor. There are only 5 houses on the street....but very far apart from each other, you'd never see or hear someone out working in their yard. We have talked about the 'what ifs'. We have various weapons in our bedroom. Even if the 1 neighbor we've met, whom we like, appeared at the foot of our bed at 2am....yup, he's catching a bullet, or a baton to the head, or a taze to the torso. What's he doing in my bedroom at 2am, you know?

Quoting futureshock:

It is sad that neighbors don't even know each other any longer.  If they had been acquainted maybe the homeowner would have recognized this kid and brought him home.


lga1965
by on Mar. 20, 2013 at 12:10 PM

 Oh boy. Guns guns guns.

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