Man accused of pointing gun at kids cutting through his property

Man accused of pointing gun at kids cutting through his property »Play Video
The kids, thinking this gravel driveway was a shortcut home, were confronted by the property owner who allegedly pointed a gun at them. The sign to the left says, "Private Property. No Trespassing. Beware of Guard Dog."

FOREST GROVE, Ore. - A local man was taken to jail Tuesday, accused of pointing a gun at three children trying to cut through his property Tuesday afternoon.

The father of one of those kids confronted 67-year-old Norman Allen VanDyke and said VanDyke admitted pointing an unloaded gun at the children while they were on his property.

The parents called 911 and said they feel like VanDyke's response went too far.

Following his arrest on charges including menacing and pointing a gun at another person, VanDyke has been released on bail.

It all started when 7-year-old Angel Martinez said he got off at the wrong bus stop. Along with two 9-year-old friends he took a gravel driveway on 22nd Avenue in Forest Grove thinking it was a shortcut home.

"This guy told us to get out, and he pointed a gun and let his dog go, and the dog was chasing me," Martinez said.

Police say VanDyke told them to get off his property then he pointed an unloaded .22-caliber handgun at them.

Martinez' mother, Evelia Vasquez, said her husband went back to the house to talk to VanDyke who said VanDyke told him he thought the kids were older and that the gun was unloaded.

According to VanDyke's next door neighbor, Carol Anderson, VanDyke has taken issue with people going through his property.

Despite the issues, Anderson said the allegations are surprising.

"They're wonderful neighbors – kind of gotten to be friends with them since I've lived here," she said, adding she's never had any problems with them.

But Vasquez is still stunned, saying they're just kids.

"The guy said, 'it doesn't matter, it wasn't loaded,' but it's still a gun. For them they don't know if it's unloaded or loaded," she said.

Police say even though the kids were in VanDyke's driveway they weren't posing a threat to him or his property.