A wealthy New Jersey businessman had his firearms seized after he used an AR-15 to chase car thieves away from his property last year, according to a new report from the New York Post.
Newly released footage shows Evan Wexler, naked, in front of his Fort Lee mansion firing several shots at another man who was trying to steal his Mercedes G-Wagon. According to the Post, it was the 18th time thieves had attempted to steal one of Wexler’s exotic cars, and the police had done little to stop them.
“I keep calling the police and showing them videos to prove I’m not crying wolf,” Wexler said. “I’m begging them to deter these guys, but they’re not doing s–t. The cops show up too late or go on high-speed chases but they never catch anyone.”
So, the wealthy butcher-turned-high-end hamburger and steak supermarket wholesaler decided to take matters into his own hands.
In the video, the would-be thief can be seen opening the door of Wexler’s Mercedes, which he admits he sometimes left unlocked. According to the Post, car thieves often looked in Wexler’s daily drivers to find keys to his more exotic cars.
In one incident last August, they stole Wexler’s $500,000 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ Coupe. It was found a week later with $80,000 worth of damage.
Moments after the thief starts the Mercedes, Wexler can be seen on his home security camera running onto his porch. He isn’t wearing any clothes, and he’s holding what appears to be an AR-style rifle. He keeps the gun trained on the thief as the man runs away and fires what the Post describes as “warning shots” from his porch.
The move succeeded in deterring that particular thief, but police were none too thrilled. They slapped Wexler with aggravated assault and possession of weapons for unlawful purposes, which the meat mogul pled down to possession of a deadly weapon.
“An incident happens where a guy gets my car started, I came out of the house with a rifle, the guy puts the car into drive, drives forward, and my gun discharges,” Wexler described the incident to the Post. “At that point, Fort Lee police show up, there’s no victim of a shooting, but they come and turn the tables on me.”
Wexler was forced to sell his guns and was sentenced to two years of probation.
“Assault firearms” are illegal in New Jersey, and Wexler’s rifle appears to meet the state’s definition of that term. But the Post reports that the charge Wexler pleaded guilty to was leveled when police found another weapon on his property that violated the state’s standard-capacity magazine ban.