Sanilac County homeowner shot by marijuana thieves recounts deadly encounter

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SANILAC COUNTY (WJRT) (12/1/2017) - Paul Dybilas was having his morning cup of coffee when four men barged into his rural Sanilac County house trying to rob him of cash and marijuana on Nov. 19.

Paul Dybilas

Only three of the intruders left alive -- and another was mortally wounded.

Dybilas received a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to his leg, from which he is still recovering.

A friend who lives at the home with Dybilas is a medical marijuana caregiver and Dybilas is a patient.

Dybilas said someone tried to break into his shed about two weeks earlier, so he had a feeling that someone was after his medical marijuana stash.

On Nov. 19, he was sipping on his cup of coffee when he heard loud bangs on the door -- then another.

"The second big bang on the door rocked the whole wall over there and I stood up," Dybilas said.

He said the intruders were trying to break down the door, which he had reinforced with lumber because he feared a robbery was possible. But the intruders finally broke the door down.

"The door flung open," Dybilas said. "I seen the big guy -- boom, boom -- and I got hit and my friend pulled me inside, and the gunfight was on."

His friend fired back. When it was all over, Dybilas had a gunshot wound through his leg. Two of the intruders were dead: 26-year-old Keith Saunders and 20-year-old Quantize Bruce.

"My friend did what he had to do or we were dead," Dybilas said.

Stephen Shimmel, 41, was arrested that morning but hung himself in jail a few days later. Preston Jack remained in custody on Friday facing several charges, including assault with intent to murder.

The four intruders were from Flint. Dybilas believes the four men wanted the keys to a shed where the medical marijuana was kept.

"I don't know these men, they don't know me," he said. "Somebody had to tell them to come out here."

Police continued to investigate whether anyone else was involved in the planning of the botched heist. Nearly two weeks after the incident, walls inside Dybilas' house are still riddled with bullet holes.

"It was the scariest thing I ever went through in my life," he said.

Dybilas said his friend, who was not identified, is getting out of the medical marijuana caregiver business. He said they were following all of the rules concerning medical marijuana.

"This ain't a drug house, this wasn't a meth house, nothing like that," Dybilas said. "It was a marihuana grow place, that is it."

Paul Dybilas runs his own construction company and hopes to get back to work by the first of the year after he recovers from the gunshot wound.

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