A jury in Texas acquitted a man on Wednesday who admitted to shooting an escort he found on Craigslist that allegedly stole from him, the San Antonio-Express News reports, because of a state law that allows people to use deadly force to recover stolen property:
Gilbert’s actions were justified, they argued, because he was trying to retrieve stolen property: the $150 he paid Frago. It became theft when she refused to have sex with him or give the money back, they said.
Gilbert testified earlier Tuesday that he had found Frago’s escort ad on Craigslist and believed sex was included in her $150 fee. But instead, Frago walked around his apartment and after about 20 minutes left, saying she had to give the money to her driver, he said.
That driver, the defense contended, was Frago’s pimp and her partner in the theft scheme.
The Texas law that allows people to use deadly force to recover property during a nighttime theft was put in place for “law-abiding” citizens, prosecutors Matt Lovell and Jessica Schulze countered. It’s not intended for someone trying to force another person into an illegal act such as prostitution, they argued.