“A ‘Good Samaritan’ shot 23-year-old Darren Lamont Evanovich outside a grocery store in Minneapolis Thursday night,” minnesota.cbslocal.com reported last Friday. “Police said they received a call saying a robber stole an elderly woman’s purse and pistol whipped her in the head. Not long after, police said they got a second call saying the alleged robber had been shot and killed in the back of Super Grand Buffet, which is located on the same block.” . . .
When police arrived on the scene, they said the “Good Samaritan” approached them and said he witnessed the robbery, chased the robber and shot him after confronting him.
The man told police he had a permit to carry a handgun and said where his gun could be found. Police said they detained the man for questioning. He has since been released.
More than a few members of our Armed Intelligentsia sent me a link to this story—for obvious reasons. Unless there’s a kidnapping or an imminent threat of death of grievous bodily harm, a “Good Samaritan” shouldn’t chase a bad guy.
For one thing, it’s extremely difficult to know the whole story: who’s doing what to whom and why they;re doing it. Trying to separate the white hats from the black hats with a gun in your hand puts you on a hiding to nowhere. One wrong decision and life as you know it will be over.
Truth be told, if your actions stimulate fresh violence, you will be held responsible for whatever happens next. As our “Good Samaritan” may soon find out, you can shoot a fleeing perp and still be guilty of murder.
If you witness a crime in progress, you should observe carefully and call 911. A fact that twincities.com brought to light, later.
“I would never encourage one of my students to get themselves involved in another person’s fight,” [firearms instructor Erik Pakieser] said. “Even if they’re coming to the defense of an innocent person, I always tell my students that the actions they are about to take are going to have significant consequences. They could get shot or killed, there could be potential criminal liability, potential civil liability. You should weigh those consequences against not acting.
Not to mention the fact that you could kill an innocent bystander, or cause the death of an innocent bystander, or die. It’s better to be a good witness, help the police apprehend the perp, and let the prosecutor prosecute.