Walhalla, SC – An intruder was driven out of a residence by an armed female homeowner on Apr. 4, but it wasn’t the last he would see of the self-reliant woman.
The following day, she showed up at his court appearance, and let him know that he wouldn’t be as fortunate next time.
"I just want you to know that – while you may have scared me in the moment - I am definitely not afraid of you now,” Keri Reeves told 33-year-old Ralph Goss during the hearing. “I hope you understand the severity of the situation in which you put yourself in, because you came within 2.5 seconds of having a full clip unloaded into your skull."
“I hope and pray to God that you don’t ever get the balls to come into my home again, because I promise you, the next time you will have the full clip unloaded,” Reeves continued. “And I will not hesitate.”
Goss, who appeared in custody during the hearing, clearly became agitated by Reeves comments, and briefly walked away at one point.
“That was uncalled for,” he complained to the judge.
At approximately 1:30 p.m., her dog began to bark, and Reeves realized that Goss was standing in her dining room.
"I started yelling, 'You need to leave! You need to get out of my house! I need you to go,'" she told WHNS.
But instead of following her commands, Goss advanced on the mother of two.
“He charged into my bedroom and he's standing between me and my door,” Reeves recounted.
“I immediately thought, ‘He’s going to get a gun. He's about to shoot me. I'm not about to die in my own house,’" she recalled.
Reeves was able to retrieve her husband's gun from the headboard area, and quickly turned on the intruder.
"I grabbed it just kind of tossed the holster across the room,” she said. “When I pulled it back to load and aim, that's when he finally realized he needed to go."
After the armed woman chased Goss from her home, she contacted police.
In the moments that followed, the reality of what occurred began to sink in, Reeves said.
"The severity of it hit me, and I was in hysterics,” she told WHNS. “I was crying, I was scared, I was very shaken."
"This could've been a very different situation had I not been properly armed,” Reeves said.
Deputies apprehended Goss as he was walking out of a wooded area about a half hour later, and found some of Reeves’ belongings in his possession.
He was charged with burglary second degree, possession of burglary tools, and petit larceny.
Goss offered an apology to Reeves during his court appearance, and said he missed his children and grandmother.
“I have children, too, and you put their lives in danger,” Reeves told Goss.
“I’m sorry. I’m deeply sorry,” he told her.
“You should be,” Reeves responded. “I’ll be sure I’ll pray for you.”
Goss’ bond was set at $65,000.