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RI Man Says He Fatally Shot Intruder in Self-Defense

Mael Vasquez
Central Falls Police via WJAR

The suspect in a fatal weekend shooting in Rhode Island says he acted in self-defense when an intruder came into his home and swung something hard at him.

A judge Monday set bail for 20-year-old Mael Vasquez, of Central Falls, at $20,000.

Police say Vasquez shot and killed 43-year-old Maurice Botelho at about 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

Vasquez called 911 and told police "I shot him."

So far, Vasquez is only facing a charge of possessing a stolen gun. Police say the weapon he used to shoot Botelho was reported stolen.

A grand jury will determine if Vasquez faces more serious charges.

Vasquez's lawyer calls it an example of the state's Castle Doctrine law, which allows people in their own homes to use deadly force against intruders they believe intend to cause harm.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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