New Hampshire

Probe Continues Into Shooting of Juvenile in NH

Police in Portsmouth, New Hampshire say charges could be filed after a shooting incident involving a teenager who apparently wandered into the Summer Street home of a former police commissioner.

The juvenile male was invited to a friend's house but apparently entered the wrong home, which was unlocked at the time, police said. There, he startled the homeowners, identified as former Portsmouth Police Commissioner Brenna Cavanaugh and her partner.

Police said the youth fled out the door with Cavanaugh's partner in pursuit. The youth got into his car and began driving away when her partner opened fire, shooting at the vehicle at least six times, according to police.

The homeowners dispute that the youth was driving away and allege he drove at them, which prompted the shooting in self defense. Police are probing what actually occurred. Fortunately, the youth was not injured.

Police Sgt. David Colby said the incident is still under review.

"Our major concern was number one there isn't an ongoing danger to the community, which there is not, and that this could have ended very tragically for both the homeowners and this young man," he said.

According to Portsmouth police, officers were on a traffic stop on Islington Street on Saturday at 3:30 a.m. when they heard what sounded like gunshots in the area.

The officers began to investigate when the Portsmouth Emergency Communications Center received a call from a Summer Street resident stating that an unknown male had entered their home, police said.

The caller said she and her partner encountered the male parked in a vehicle on their street and that her partner, armed with a pistol, fired at the vehicle as it fled.

Portsmouth detectives were notified to respond to the scene.

Police are looking into whether the couple is protected under the Castle Doctrine, which relates to self-defense with reasonable force while in your own home.

Cavanaugh did not want to speak to NBC10 Boston but referred to a statement which says, in part, " a last resort action of self-defense, in an effort to disable the vehicle and neutralize an immediate threat to our lives, the vehicle was fired upon as it approached and passed us..."

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