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Rapid City Journal, Rapid City, SD, 06/28/02

Sunday, September 1, 2002

Sena Lauritsen and a few friends staying with her at her South Dakota home were preparing to go out for a swim when Lauritsen's neighbors alerted her that fugitives being chased by police were heading her way. Lauritsen and her friends moved to an upstairs bedroom so she could have a better view of the area. Some time later, after it appeared the chase may have veered off in another direction, Lauritsen and her guests started to leave her house again. That's when she spotted two teens, escapees from a school for troubled youth, approaching her house. When one teen rattled her patio door, she dialed 9-1-1 and picked up her 20-ga. shotgun. "It's my rabbit gun," she said. Lauritsen asked authorities on the phone if she could hold the gun on the fugitives, "and they said, yes, if I wasn't afraid to. I wasn't afraid." So she pointed it at the teens through the door and ordered them to keep their hands in the air. She held them for about 20 minutes until Jones County Sheriff Chris Jung took them into custody. Lauritsen said she'd rather not have to shoot them, but she was ready to protect herself and her home. She laughed when she heard of a highway patrol report incorrectly identifying her as a "scrappy 90-year-old." "I'm not 90, but I am scrappy," she replied.
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