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Man shot by his own booby-trap

HOUSTON -- A man who was burglarized at least 10 times in recent years was seriously wounded by an illegal booby-trapped shotgun he had rigged in his home for burglars, police said.

Julius Jackson, 48, was shot in the lower left leg Thursday inside his home. He was taken to Ben Taub Hospital where he was listed in serious condition Friday.

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Police said such booby traps violate state law, but prosecutors have not decided yet whether to charge Jackson.

'He was burglarized at least 10 times in the past five years, and he was just tried of it,' said his son, Craig. 'He was just angry that it (burglary) kept happening. You got to protect your property.'

The elder Jackson has set a series of bobby traps in his well-kept home where he lives alone, but this was the first time one discharged accidentally. His son said his father also had placed fish hooks on all the window sills.

Jackson said he had planned to install a burglar alarm at his father's house this weekend.

'I guess he still wants one,' the younger Jackson said.

Houston police spokesman Dan Turner said officers arrived to find the elder Jackson at the front door, and he warned them about going inside. A police bomb squad was called to the house to disarm the other booby traps.

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Police said they do not know how Jackson tripped his own bobby trap, but he crawled to the front of the house and called for help.

'There have been several cases like this in other parts of the country,' Turner said.

Jackson's former wife, Doris Simonton, said he started installing the traps 'little by little' during the past few years.

'Julius is the kind of guy on top of things,' she said. 'He is always watching out for the neighborhood. He is not the kind of guy to walk into his own trap.'

Simonton said Jackson strung strings to the shotguns mounted at knee level. Although she had never seen the traps, she said he told her he had some in every room.

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