Whole Foods Texas has transformed itself into a “gun-free zone.” No wonder, then, that some of our Lone Star State readers have vowed never to darken the store’s doors again. But c’mon. Whole Foods is home to some of the world’s best cheeses, including our man JWT’s epic, prize-winning goat cheese. In Austin, the yoga pants parade alone is worth the price of admission. Which is, it must be said, disarmament. One of the reasons I don’t mind [so much]: the parking lot is close-in, small, well-organized and well-lit. In contrast, my local HEB supermarket is a sprawling affair in front of a relatively large and chaotic parking lot with plenty of hidden sight lines. It’s an open invitation for robbers. Which helps explain this news item [via kxan.com]. . .
Austin police are investigating a violent attack at a south Austin grocery store. Police say a man cut a woman’s throat while trying to rob her.
The woman left the H-E-B store at South Congress and Oltorf, just after 1:30 a.m. As she was walking to her pickup truck, which was parked beside the far back corner of the building, a man attacked her with what police describe as an “edged weapon.” They say he cut her throat, they struggled and he took her purse.
The woman walked back toward the store, trying to get help. A security guard heard her and used his orange security vest to put pressure on her wounds until EMS arrived.
Police report she is now out of surgery and expected to recover. Because her wounds were so severe, she was unable to give officers a detailed description of the suspect.
Detectives believe the attack was random, and they are now searching for the suspect.
I don’t think that word “random” means what kxan.com thinks it means. A criminal staked out a location where he had a high chance of success, waited for a suitable victim and attacked. Viciously. If this victim had been armed – and HEB does not ban legally carried firearms from its stores – there might have been a very different outcome.
Then again, maybe not.
You never know what’s going to happen in a violent or threatening encounter. No matter what, it’s always best to be prepared. First, by avoiding stupid people in stupid places (e.g., a poorly-lit, crowded parking lot after midnight) doing stupid things. Secondly, by being situationally aware, so that you can detect a stupid person about to do something stupid (like rob you) as early as possible and escape, evade or attack.
As regular readers and clear thinkers no doubt know, shooting an attacker can be an excellent way to stop an attack. Again, HEB does not have a “no guns” policy. So, with proper licensing and situational awareness and armament, the victim could have launched an armed assault on the robber. I wish she had. And here’s a related message for Whole Foods: disarming customers inside a store leaves them disarmed outside the store. That’s something Shannon Watts and her Moms Demanding Disarmament will never acknowledge or consider. But you should. [h/t JF]