While we bitch and moan about regions where our right personal self-defense is neutered, it’s always nice to have a reminder that most of the country’s politicos still respect the average citizen’s protection needs, and that many of those citizens exercise their right to bear arms. Last week, we talked about what not to do when you DGU. Today, let’s take a look at some recent incidents where the defender did the right thing. There’s no shortage of reports of defensive gun uses. This week I chronicled over thirty news articles; here are some of the highlights . . .
Getting more than you bargained for is usually a good thing. And it certainly was when an El Paso burglar came away with a lot more than he’d hoped after trying to break into a third floor apartment. The 25-year-old thief left empty-handed, but not empty-chested. Two rounds from the homeowner’s handgun handgun will be his keepsakes for picking the wrong house, assuming he survives.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that the bad guys read columns like this in order to learn from the idiocy of their compatriots. If that’s the case, here’s some advice: don’t mess with old people. They’ve been there, done that, seen it all and some pissant thug and his meth-head buddy usually don’t stand a chance against a grandma with a gat. The 87-year-old granny in this case chased off two local boys whose home invasion plans ended, “after she displayed a 9mm pistol.” According to the oh-so-eloquent Henderson County Sheriff, Charles S. McDonald:
“I can’t recommend to people what they should or should not do, but I will tell you that first-degree burglary — breaking into a house while it is occupied — is a serious crime,” McDonald said Saturday.
“Anybody that is going to do that is risking a lot, so you really have to ask yourself if you’re confronted in a situation like that what might be at stake,” he said. “My general advice is ‘aim small, miss small.’”
Another group of humans you don’t ever want to mess with are mothers with children. Think about it – even the most docile maternal mammals go berserk when you threaten their precious offspring. If you’re unlucky enough to face a grizzly, she’ll get between you and her cubs then proceed to bite and claw until you’re no longer at threat. But if you’re dumb enough to ignore the warnings of a rural Alabama mom home alone with her kids, then you’re going to have a bad time of it.
Martha Lewis, of Walker County, recently faced one of these poor decision-makers. Upon hearing the crash of an intruder entering her home late at night, Martha grabbed her gun, woke up her two daughters and told them to get weapons of their own (for those keeping score, one grabbed a hatchet, the other a butcher knife).
From the top of the stairs, Martha confronted the man at the bottom as he started up the stairs:
“I knew when he stepped on the landing that I would have to shoot him,” Lewis said. “He starts like coming up the stairs and he said, ‘would you shoot me?‘ And I said ’I don’t want to have to but I will.’”
Twenty-five year-old Michael Jacobs ignored her warnings, and Ms. Lewis took on the calm demeanor of a trained professional:
“It wasn’t like, oh can I pull the trigger? It was like when should I shoot? When will he be close enough that I know I won’t miss him? That’s one of the things that was going through my mind,” she said.
The guy’s now in the hospital under constant sedation. Every time he awakens, he becomes so combative they have to sedate him again (probably kicking himself for being so stupid). As for Martha Lewis, she sleeps peacefully knowing that she made the right decision when she bought her gun three years ago. In her words, “There’s no way that I could have fought him off.”
Not all attackers are two-legged, though. An unidentified man, legally carrying a concealed Ruger .38 revolver, was walking his terrier in Bradenton, Florida when a “pit-bull type dog” jumped the fence and attacked his Jack Russell. Manatee County Sheriff’s deputies said the shooting of the pit bull – current condition unknown – was justified and no charges would be filed.
One of the most popular DGUs of the past week involved an evil samurai being taken down by the guy who puts sprinkles on your cone at the local DQ. A masked man entered the Dairy Queen on S. Maryland Parkway in Las Vegas, wielding a sword and demanding cash. Instead he was shot at least twice and died at a local hospital. One employee thinks the shooter may face disciplinary action by DQ, mentioning that employees aren’t allowed to carry at work. Her employer stresses that if robbed, the best course is to comply with the bad guy’s demands to avoid injuries.
So, what can employers do to ensure their employees are safe from crazies while on the job? I don’t buy the “give them what they want and hope they won’t kill you” attitude anymore. There are too many stories of homeowners, shop owners and store clerks being killed after complying. The gun shop guys and liquor store owners know the answer: arm yourself and your staff.
It appears one convenience store owner is paying heed, and offering firearm training to his staff after several armed robberies. Elias Haddad, owner of the Cary Street Mini Mart in Richmond, Virginia is sending his two workers to firearms training. And, he’s taking this seriously: “I’m personally going to take them to the range, and I’m personally going to watch them for a while before they can handle a gun,” said Haddad. “I have the liability after all,” he said. Good for you, Mr. Haddad. I hope every crook in your area hears about this. You did the right thing, and you are no longer an easy target.
Home (or work) defense really requires awareness of the four rules, especially #4: be aware of your target and what’s behind it. The defensive gun users in these articles aren’t heroes, just everyday folks like you and me. They did the right things – determining the target is hostile, shooting until the threat is neutralized and waiting until the situation’s clearly a serious one before pulling the trigger. These are lessons we can all learn from.