Cheshire car owner speaks out after almost being killed by suspected car thieves

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CHESHIRE, Conn. (WTNH) — A Cheshire car owner is speaking only to News 8 after he was almost killed by suspected car thieves during a confrontation.

It happened around 1:40 a.m. Thursday. News 8 is not identifying the man to protect his safety. He says he was watching television when his motion-sensing lights went on. Through his window, the man says he saw two men wearing hooded sweatshirts walk up his driveway and begin rummaging through his vehicle.

“I got mad. They were on my property invading my space so I pursued them,” he said, “I opened the door and confronted them. They took off running.”

He drove after them.

“When I found them again, I rolled my window down and confronted them again and I took off behind them.”

The man eventually caught up with the suspects on Route 10, Highland Avenue. He says there were four young men driving a gray or silver Subaru Legacy sedan.

Suddenly, one of the suspects pulled out a handgun.

“I saw him in the firing position and I’m like, ‘does he have a gun? Is he going to shoot me?’ and the glass shattered.”

The bullet went through the windshield on the passenger side. It barely missed the victim.

“We were about this far from talking about a gentleman who was shot,” said Cheshire Police Chief Neil Dryfe. “We’re talking about something that could have been horribly tragic, over a car break-in.”

Chief Dryfe says Cheshire has seen its share of car break-ins and thefts that have been plaguing the state. He understands the frustration but is pleading with people not to take matters into their own hands.  The car owner we spoke with agrees. With the benefit of hindsight, he knows he’s lucky to be alive.

“They have no appreciation for life, nor do they care for my life or theirs. At that point, if they want to go through my car, they can go through my car.”

The chief says it’s not clear if these were juvenile offenders, but he’s joining calls for legislators to hold a special session to discuss juvenile justice reform.

No special session has been scheduled.

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