Skip to comments.No charges in shooting of accused stalker
Posted on 01/10/2008 10:15:47 AM PST by jaydubya2
HAMMOND | A Hessville woman will not be charged in the shooting death of a man accused of breaking into her home in November and stalking her.
(Listen to the 911 call)
Lake County Prosecutor Bernard Carter said on Wednesday he was turning down any charges against the woman in the death of Ryan Lee Bergner, 41, considering her actions to be in self-defense and defense of property.
The Nov. 12 shooting of Bergner as he cornered the 51-year-old woman in an upstairs bedroom closet capped a month of escalating terror -- chronicled in a series of police reports filed by the woman -- which included break-ins, vandalism and assaults in her workplace.
They had briefly dated over the summer, but Bergner couldn't accept that she didn't want to be his girlfriend, and wouldn't take "no" for an answer, the woman said.
That fatal Monday night, she was watching television at 10:30 p.m. when she heard a window breaking, and called 911.
An audio recording of her conversation with the emergency dispatcher, from the initial break-in to her escape from the dying Bergner six minutes later, was released by Hammond police on Wednesday.
"I'm so scared," the woman said to the 911 operator, who told her to lock herself in a bedroom until police arrived.
Bergner had already broken into her house two days earlier, she reported to police, destroying a clock-radio and stealing several of her undergarments.
"I heard him turn a light on, a hallway light," she told the dispatcher as she hid in a closet, armed with a pistol a friend had given her for protection.
"What are you doing?" she can be heard asking over the sound of her bedroom door being kicked in. "Stop it! Please stop it! Just stop it!"
Gunshots can clearly be heard on the recording. She later said Bergner was on top of her in the closet, his hands around her throat, choking her.
"What are you trying to do, kill me?" the mortally wounded Bergner asked.
"Are you trying to kill me?"
Police found her in her front yard when they arrived moments later, and found Bergner, wearing black leather gloves and a brown leather jacket, lying partially in the bedroom closet with three bullet wounds to his abdomen, a 9 mm pistol on the bed nearby.
"That tape is absolutely chilling," said Hammond Police Chief Brian Miller, who worked for years as a detective with the department's sex crimes division.
Miller said he is regularly asked to speak at meetings of women's organizations and support groups for victims of domestic violence, and in the future will be taking the recording along with him as an example of what can happen.
"I didn't want it to turn out like this," the woman told The Times the day after the shooting, though she declined to comment for the record on Wednesday's decision by the prosecutor's office.
Sounds like a real winner.
Understandable if she didn’t want it to turn out like that, but you have to do what you have to do to stay alive.
Happened in November.
What took them so long??
Thank goodness she knew how to run the pistol. (I know, I know, if it had been a .45 she would have only had to fire once)
Sounds like a no brainer to me.
Did he ask his last question after the first, second, or third bullet hit him?
"No, try not. Do or not do ... there is no try" Yoda
“What are you trying to do, kill me?” the mortally wounded Bergner asked.
I guess her rejections didn’t sink in.
But the bullets did.
By the time the police got there, the dead body would have been hers - had she not had the gun.
What is the saying: “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.”
We have the right of self-defense = and not to feel bad for taking a life rather than dying...she did not kill this man so much as he killed himself by his actions...This is a better outcome than her having to go through a year of more of trial - with him, no doubt, out on bail...and even if convicted, the specter of his getting out always hanging over her life. This way, it is over with. He is the cause of his death.
I would happily replace her ammo!
Also, he was still alive after three shots to the abdomen.
Sounds like she needs a larger caliber.
Oh, and the family of the dead scumbag insist that he was such a sweet man. Why, they simply can't believe he would do such a thing.
Don't leave the gun with the attacker - he might get up again!
“What are you trying to do, kill me?” the mortally wounded Bergner asked.
That had to be the dumbest question of his life.....and the last one to boot.
His family may be having a hard time with this, but how on earth can they say he didn't go there with any intent to hurt her???? She backed off as far as she could. She was in an upstairs bedroom closet with him on top of her- she couldn't have waited any longer to shoot!
Whoever the friend was who gave her the gun, he or she saved this lady's life by giving her the means to protect herself. Thank God she was strong and courageous enough to use those means when she had to.
I'm sorry she had to go to that extent to protect herself but not sorry she did it.
I just love a happy ending!
I couldn’t hear the shots.
How different would the out come have been had this woman not had a firearm and the courage to use it. Always fight to keep the gun grabbers from disarming honest law abiding citizens!
I pray she never has a "next time" but if she does, I would advise her to shoot sooner.
Glad she made it and had the sense to get a firearm. Otherwise she would be dead.
Good shooting ma’am.
Sorry she had to go through this.
When the dispatcher tells the woman, “It’s only been two minutes,” it was already over four minutes.
I heard two of the shots on the tape.
At first I thought the shots were noise from him breaking down the door, but I listened again.
It sounds to me like he came in the door, came at her, and she is saying stop it. And then a shot, and she says stop it, another shot. I don’t hear the third shot. But you can hear him saying (after the first 2 shots) “Are you trying to kill me?” He says this after she shot him at least twice.
She needed a larger caliber.
As the brother of a wonderful woman and mother of two who didn’t have the chance to make it the last ten feet to her firearms, I’m thankful that this poor woman did. Praying for her.
Thank God a good friend loaned her a gun....that friend saved her life!!
Thank God for her friend who loaned the gun to her.
Hope she returns it and buys one of her own now.
Friend of mine with Houston PD shot an armed robber 3 times in the gut with .45, using jacketed HP’s.
Robber lived, in jail, my friend said “every time he empties his colostomy bag, he remembers me.”
No he went there to break a window to enter her home and then kick her bedroom door down for a nice game of Parcheesi.
Your right, The dispatch says “they’re on their way, it’s only been two minutes”, 4:08 minutes after the start of the 911 call.
To liberals, it’s just another ‘gun related death’ that they’ll add to the totals to show how dangerous firearms are.
Bergner’s dad needs to man up and admit he raised a bully who was intent on the ultimate death of this woman. The Bergner family should hang their heads in shame and never mention the son’s name again.
This woman is my hero and should be the poster Woman for CCW!
Just remember to have this particular story in mind next time someone in favor of gun control talks about 'waiting periods' and 'cooling-off periods' and thinks it ought to be illegal to loan someone a firearm. That and the 'We don't need a gun because we have police and 911 on our telephones.'.
Notice also that the cops arrived too late even though they were speeding to the residence knowing full well what was going on there. The woman was on the phone with 911 the entire time. All the 911 operator could do was hear her being attacked. If she hadn't had the gun, the police would have found her dead and may or may not have apprehended the wacko.
To all ladies reading this thread, if you haven't got a firearm of your own, be fully aware that these stories don't happen to other people far away from where you live. They can happen to you no matter how idyllic and safe you think that you are.
Walking into a gun store isn't like walking into a pornography store or into a den of derisive rednecks. Those guys who run the place are there to help you and think you should have come in sooner. A gun in the home is not like storing deadly plutonium or a faulty hand-grenade ready to explode at any moment, just like meat cleavers don't spring out of your kitchen cabinet and start slashing at people.
You can live the whole rest of your life never needing a gun. Of course, if it ever comes to needing a gun, you could live the whole rest of your life wishing you had one.
Even if you live in a place where the police can get to you in four minutes, it's still plenty of time for a madman to kill you cowering fearfully in your closet.
I bet those few minutes were the longest in that woman's life.
can’t get the link to play?
Thanks. I couldn’t listen at work and forgot about listening to the audio.
Thanks for the Youtube and link and I was the first to rank it with 5 stars. Well deserved DaveLoneRanger.
We left almost fifteen years ago when the area started changing.
Figured it wouldn't change for the better. It's sad really.
That’s great DLR. Your video should be a eyeopener to many! It says it all. Ex-region rat.
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