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June 09, 2017

Police: Tow truck driver kills man in Point Breeze shootout over car repossession

A 32-year-old man was killed Friday morning after a car repossession in Point Breeze turned violent, according to police and media reports.

A dog nearby that did not belong to anyone involved was also struck in the South Philadelphia shootout.

The tow truck driver tried to pick up a Toyota passenger van in front of the Eight Brothers Food Market at 18th and Dickinson streets around 10:20 a.m., not realizing a woman was inside, Philadelphia police told NBC10.

The woman, who owed money on the SUV, got out of the vehicle and called both the bank and a 32-year-old man, whom NBC10 described as her boyfriend.

When he arrived, the man tried to stop the repossession and became involved in a shootout with the tow truck driver, police said.

The driver told police he acted in self-defense when he shot the other man in the arm and the chest. The wounded man was pronounced dead at 10:51 a.m. at Jefferson University Hospital, according to a report.

About 20 shell casings were scattered at the scene, and detectives were questioning both the tow truck driver and the woman who owned the van, according to the report.

Police said they recovered both weapons.

The dog, a black St. Bernard and poodle mix named Ace, survived the incident and was in stable condition after he was hit by ricocheting bullets and other debris, according to a Friday report. When the shooting broke out, owner Johnny Fischer was walking Ace and Callie, a goldendoodle that fractured her paw while Fischer rushed his dogs to cover.

A GoFundMe page to help fund Ace's medical and recovery costs had raised nearly $1,000 as of Sunday. 

An investigation into the incident is underway.

UPDATE (June 11, 2017): This story has been updated to show that the dog struck in the incident survived.