An 87-year-old Greek grandmother in Pyrgos, in the Peloponnese, will go on trial for shooting a burglar who broke into her home. The elderly woman says she had simply had it with burglars, who have broken in and stolen from her five times since last July.
The grandmother shot the burglar with an airgun, after he entered her home from an unbolted back entrance. She is facing charges of causing grave bodily harm. She claims she was frustrated and that she didn’t shoot to kill.
In a television interview on Wednesday, the 87-year-old grandmother said that she was lying in her kitchen bed when she saw a man coming into the house. The burglar was looking for jewelry and cash, according to her testimony.
“It wasn’t the first time he had entered my home,” she explained. “They have stolen my money, they have beaten me, hard, and they just won’t stop.” The burglar was attempting to get to the woman’s handbag when he saw her and attacked her with a stick. He hit her in the face, injuring her right eye.
Grandma shot the burglar with airgun
In defense, she took her airgun and shot him in his left arm, without aiming. “I couldn’t take it anymore,” she says, so “this time I shot at him.” The grandma says that the very same two burglars have broken into her house and stolen from her a total of five times.
She claims that the people who have repeatedly broken into her home are two Roma brothers who live in the area. She says she had told the local police about those incidents and had warned the brothers that if they tried it again, she would shoot them.
The wounded burglar disappeared from the scene, but was later arrested by the police. The 87-year-old grandmother will face charges for shooting him, according to Greek law — even though he entered her home and attacked her.
“If I’m still alive by the time I get to court”
That is, that will happen “if I’m still alive by the time we get to court,” she says, pointing out the typical delays in trials in Greece. Often it takes more than five years for a case to come before the court.
According to her village neighbors, the grandmother lived in Toronto, Canada for over 40 years. She came back to her home village to spend the last years of her life in the place where her family had lived and died.
As for the Roma brothers, one of which was the wounded burglar, the 87-year-old says they live in a nearby village and the local people know about them. “Every time they break into my house, they steal more money,” she says. “I don’t care if I go to prison. I’ve been through worse, I will get through this too.”