CENTER POINT, AL (WBRC) - For 21 years, John Croft lived in his Center Point virtually problem free until last summer.
"I've been a prisoner in my house," he said.
Croft, who is 79, says the burglaries began last June. Since then, he says his house has been broken into 13 times.
The most recent case came around 1:15 Wednesday morning.
"When I heard the noise, that's when they opened the window from the basement coming to the level where the bedrooms are," he recalled.
Jefferson County deputies say there were two men inside. Another, driving the getaway car, waited outside.
"I have three bedrooms. I think they checked the other two bedrooms out and then he came over there and said, 'Don't move!' He heard the bed squeak. I was getting my gun. He said, 'Don't move' and he used the 'N' word and I shot," Croft recounted later Wednesday.
"I hate that boy dead, but I don't hate I shot him," Croft said.
Authorities identified the suspect that was killed as 22-year-old Nicholas Attwan McDonald.
Croft says he didn't know it at the time, but McDonald had shot him too, hitting him in the ankle.
Wednesday afternoon, investigators were back at his home, scouring for evidence.
Croft says he had lived his life hoping to never kill someone. Now, he wrestles with reality through mixed emotions.
"I just hate to meet his mother because it was a teen. And there's nothing as precious to a mom as a son. And you know what's been happening to black boys today. For another black man to shoot one don't look good. But like I say, I had no choice," Croft said matter-of-factly.
Deputies are still searching for the two other suspects.
Croft believes they are friends of a young man he knows.
Officials say Croft will not face charges as he was well within his rights to defend himself and his property.