‘Lenient’ Sentence For Man In Suspected Burglar’s Death

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – A former security guard will serve two years in prison for gunning down man who he said was breaking into his Detroit home.

A judge on Friday also sentenced Tigh Croff to three years’ probation for manslaughter in the December 2009 death of 53-year-old Herbert Silas.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said her office will appeal the sentence “because it is extremely inappropriate under the facts of the case.”

Police said Croff returned home to find Silas and another man in his backyard. Authorities said Croff chased Silas down the block, where Silas reportedly taunted Croff before Croff shot him.

In court, Friday, Croff apologized to the victim’s family, calling himself a hypocrite and a sinner.

“(The Bible) says, when you catch a thief, you’re supposed to help him…and, as me being a child of God, I just want everyone to understand that I am not murderer and I’m not a vigilante, ” Croff said.

“All I would like for people to do is just keep praying for me. Please forgive me, because I was supposed to help him, and I chose not to help him — and now I have the audacity to stand up here and ask for somebody to help me,” he said.

WWJ’s Florence Walton reports that Circuit Court Judge Michael Hathaway could have sentenced Croff to much more prison time, but said he could not ignore that victim has been trespassing.

Prosecutor Molly Kettler was not happy with what she called a lenient sentence.

“Mr. Silas was unarmed when Mr. Croff made a conscious decision to kill him. He was no longer fleeing, and he was begging for his life,” she said.

A mistrial was declared last August after jurors said they couldn’t agree on a verdict on the manslaughter charge. 
The Associated Press contributed to this report.

  • Jim

    The criminal was not begging for his life, and he would have been back again. It’s time to clean up the criminal element any way possible. Be honest, his “family” knew what he did for a living, and they were probably recipiants of the booty. And Bing wants people to move to Detroit from the suburbs. The damned criminals will steal more valuables than one will get in the residential kickbacks.

  • Bill

    Here is a man that took steps to protect his home and clean up the city. Wipe this off his record and let him get back to living his life.

  • Joyace

    SEVERAL QUESTIONS………Do you know what it ifeels like to work for years to acquire what you have and then have some lazy poachers come in and take it? Do you know what it feels like to go into work without getting sleep? You can’t sleep in the bedroom because the robbers was in there and you lay on the couch with the phone in your hand and fully clothed watching the door and hallway waiting and listening? Naps is the best you can do..After months you are so exhausted you finally sleep…18 hours.?? You feel so violated but yet the criminal is the one with all the rights. If they go to jail or prison we still pay through the nose for their comfy room and better meals than a lot of us taxpayers eat….Of course we have to see that they have all the best.. most modern facilities and education if they want it. Then we give to our children what is left and maybe not the school they would like to go to. If more took the same approach as this gentleman perhaps B&E’s would be less a problem…How many would be so eager to rob if they thought they wasn’t going to live to reap the rewards of the B&E.? You never forget this invasion of your privacy. It has been many, many years since my 2 robberies and believe me, it sticks with you………

  • http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2012/09/22/prosecutors-win-appeal-in-death-tied-to-burglar/ Prosecutors Win Appeal In Death Tied To Burglar « CBS Detroit

    […] 33-year-old Croff already is serving a separate two-year sentence for using a gun during the incident. He’s supposed to be released in […]

  • http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2013/01/04/judge-again-orders-no-prison-in-vigilante-killing/ Judge Again Orders No Prison In ‘Vigilante’ Killing « CBS Detroit

    […] 34-year-old Croff already is serving a separate two-year sentence for using a gun during the incident. He’s supposed to be released in […]

  • http://localdetroitnews.com/news/judge-again-orders-no-prison-in-vigilante-killing/ Judge Again Orders No Prison In ‘Vigilante’ Killing | Local Detroit News

    […] 34-year-old Croff already is serving a separate two-year sentence for using a gun during the incident. He’s supposed to be released in […]

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