Sutherland Springs Shooting Proves (Again): When Seconds Count the Police are Only Minutes Away

Route from Floresville, Texas to Sutherland Springs (courtesy goggle maps)

As a member of the law enforcement community, the crime in Sutherland Springs hit me hard. My job is to protect what’s best about America. What could be better than hard-working rural Americans gathering to worship their God on a Sunday morning? The residents of a small South Texas town were practicing their faith believing, perhaps, that mass murder doesn’t knock on the door of Small Town America. Their rude awakening made me wonder: is anything sacred?

What hit me even harder: members of the mainstream media and politicians using this tragedy as an excuse to strip Americans of their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. The bodies of the victims weren’t even cool as the enemies of freedom began dancing in the victims’ blood. There needs to be more gun control, another assault weapon ban, a “high-capacity” magazine ban, “universal” background checks, outright restrictions and suspension of civil rights.

To be fair, the press have reported the actions of the two small town Americans that stepped up to the plate and took action: Stephen Willeford and Johnnie Langendorff. Two Texans who saw their neighbors being attacked by a ruthless and heartless person and both said enough was enough — if they even needed to think about it. They engaged the gunman and chased him until he died. They did it with their own privately owned gun, exercising their civil rights to counter an imminent threat of grievous bodily harm or death.

Wilson County Sheriff's department (courtesy facebook.com)

The San Antonio police — some thirty miles from Sutherland Springs —  didn’t respond to the crime scene in time to stop the act of violence on that horrific Sunday morning. The Wilson County Sheriff’s office — based in Floresville, about 13 miles from Sutherland Springs — didn’t arrive at the crime scene to stop the act of violence on that horrific Sunday morning.

That’s what Mr. Willeford and Mr. Langendorff did. They stopped the violence.

Seeing his fellow Texans being attacked, Mr. Willeford grabbed his rifle and engaged the gunman (I refuse to say his name). According to news sources, that Sutherland Springs resident hit the gunman causing him to drop his rifle. Furthermore, Mr. Willieford continued to engage the gunman as he fled in his vehicle, shooting out his vehicle’s back window.

Another Sutherland Springs resident, Johnnie Langendorff, also swung into action:

“I saw two men exchanging gunfire, the other being the citizen of the community. The shooter of the church had taken off, fled in his vehicle, the other gentleman came and said we need to pursue him. And that’s what I did, I just acted.”

He said he did not know Mr. Willeford:

“He was just a member of the community and he came to my vehicle in distress with his weapon. He explained very quickly what happened. He got into the truck and I knew that it was time to go.”

The gunman was chased and eventually crashed. Mr. Langendorff said Mr. Willeford walked up to the gunman’s vehicle with his gun drawn and the suspect didn’t move. They stayed there for at least five minutes, until police arrived.

“It was strictly just acting on what’s the right thing to do,” Mr Langendorff said.

These two men likely saved lives by force of arms, as our Founding Fathers intended. They defended themselves and their fellow man without regard to whether or not they had the power of the state behind them.

Again, my heart goes out to the residents and victims of Sutherland Springs, Texas. My eternal disgust and condemnation to those dancing in the blood of the victims of this horrific act to further their statist agenda. To rob Americans of their individual right to keep and bear arms.

Stay safe, stay armed, and stay American, in heart and spirit.

comments

  1. avatar Joel says:

    Well said.

    1. avatar tinhats says:

      strongly concur

  2. avatar The Punisher says:

    It’s called a posse.

    This is what citizens who are really concerned with safety do. It’s their responsibility.

    I’m sorry, but if the author, being in “law enforcement” really wants to help or make things change then he and his “thin blue line” buddies need to be one of the first to stand up and be the change.

    1. avatar Bob says:

      I think the author is trying to bring change. If he didn’t truly care about the 2nd Amendment and how it applies to the people he wouldn’t have written this article. His experience in LE is why he knows that when seconds count, cops are always minutes away.

    2. avatar CC says:

      All the widescale polling of police find 90% support more citizens owing firearms, more citizens carrying firearms, and90% oppose things like magazine capacity limits, “Assault rifle bans” and consistently advocate more and longer punishment for violent crimes.

      PoliceOne which is the only organization to have done widescale polling has found this consistently.

      A handful, a tiny percentage of rank and file, as well as many *politically appointed* chiefs towing the line for the politicians who appointed them, or unwilling to say what really works (longer sentences) oppose the Second Amendment are on the other side and get all the media attention and quotes.

    3. avatar Cliff H says:

      From John Locke’s Second Treatise on Government, Chapter II, Of the State of Nature:

      7. And that all men may be restrained from invading others’ rights, and from doing hurt to one another, and the law of Nature be observed, which willeth the peace and preservation of all mankind, the execution of the law of Nature is in that state put into every man’s hands, whereby every one has a right to punish the transgressors of that law to such a degree as may hinder its violation. For the law of Nature would, as all other laws that concern men in this world, be in vain if there were nobody that in the state of Nature had a power to execute that law, and thereby preserve the innocent and restrain offenders; and if any one in the state of Nature may punish another for any evil he has done, every one may do so. For in that state of perfect equality, where naturally there is no superiority or jurisdiction of one over another, what any may do in prosecution of that law, every one must needs have a right to do.

      8. And thus, in the state of Nature, one man comes by a power over another, but yet no absolute or arbitrary power to use a criminal, when he has got him in his hands, according to the passionate heats or boundless extravagancy of his own will, but only to retribute to him so far as calm reason and conscience dictate, what is proportionate to his transgression, which is so much as may serve for reparation and restraint. For these two are the only reasons why one man may lawfully do harm to another, which is that we call punishment. In transgressing the law of Nature, the offender declares himself to live by another rule than that of reason and common equity, which is that measure God has set to the actions of men for their mutual security, and so he becomes dangerous to mankind; the tie which is to secure them from injury and violence being slighted and broken by him, which being a trespass against the whole species, and the peace and safety of it, provided for by the law of Nature, EVERY MAN UPON THIS SCORE, BY THE RIGHT HE HATH TO PRESERVE MANKIND IN GENERAL, MAY RESTRAIN, OR WHERE IT IS NECESSARY, DESTROY THINGS NOXIOUS TO THEM, AND SO MAY BRING SUCH EVIL ON ANY ONE WHO HATH TRANSGRESSED THAT LAW, AS MAY MAKE HIM REPENT THE DOING OF IT, thereby deter him, and, by his example, others from doing the like mischief. And in this case, and upon this ground, every man hath a right to punish the offender, and be executioner of the law of Nature. (emphasis mine by use of ALL CAPS)

      This was written somewhere around 1700-1703.

      (Note: RF, Nick, et al, I sure wish there were some instructions somewhere on the site that explained how to BOLD, italics, mark as quotation, etc. when we write these things. I know it can be done, I just can’t figure out how to access it.)

  3. avatar neiowa says:

    San Antonio is not IN Wilson Co Tx.why would they respond.

    Wilson Co Tx has population of approx. 42000. A bit more than the Co I live in but similar. Sunday morning there likely would be two or three deputies on duty in the ENTIRE Co. Wilson Co has 804mi2. Do the math.

    Easily might be a 1/2 hour for a response if the deputy is at the far end of the Co when called.

    1. avatar Anon in Ct says:

      It’s quite possible that San Antonio has agreements with nearby rural counties to provide resources which those counties don’t themselves possess. Generally that’s a good thing – avoids the proliferation of MRAPs and the like to every small department. But response times won’t be short just by dint of the geography.

  4. avatar Mr.Savage says:

    IF I ever have to kill a man, I hope I am in a similar situation to the citizen in this shooting, protecting innocent life from a psyco, good on you sir!

  5. avatar James Allen Wyatt, Jr., Miss. State Univ. Class of 1961 says:

    “ASSUMPTION OF THE RISK CLEARLY, POTENTIALLY AND INEVIDABLY INVITE INEVIABLE TERRIBLE TRAGIC RESULTS”;
    the validity of this astute observation yet again just proven by this latest incident that took place earlier this Sunday morning, 5 Nov. 2017, i.e. this that at this rural Baptist Church in Sutherland Spings, Texas and in which it is now reported that at least 26 dead and 20 were injured in this shooting in which the murder supposedly killed himself.
    The harsh reality is that evil is rampant in these latter days as Lucifer, his Demons and his totally devoted and totallly evil human disciples wjp totally dedicated to EVIL and this fact this should be readily apparent to those who are claiming to be Christians and if they are Born Again Christians and thus endwelled by The Holy Spirit, they the legimate Church body as a whole should most certainly be readily aware of this most obvious fact and most certainly suppose to be wise and thus knowing fact it is beyond reason that Christian Churches should choose to ignore this readily apparent fact and this ignorance is beyond reason amd certainly beyond excuse.
    Only the ’secular’, the Unsaved could & should logically be expected be ignorant of and/or ignore of this glaring vivid fact!!!
    AND SO . . .
    ASSUMPTION OF THE RISK CLEARLY POTENTIALLY AND CLEARLY INEVIDABLY INVITE INEVIABLE TERRIBLE TRAGIC RESULTS!

    For over 30 years my wife was Secretary of Big Springs Baptist Church here in Cleveland, Tennessee and of those in attendance in that church of 200+ members among which there were several officers, I was probably the only one that was armed, having always been armed even back in 1950s when in college and subsequently in the course of working in 8 or 9 staunch anti-gun states as well as through TODAY . . . . always having been firmly convinced the Our Triune God gave us not only the ability but the responsibility as well of providing for ourselves, that in spite of His having provided for each of us who belonged to Him His Divine LEADERSHIP, GUIDANCE DIRECTION AS WELL AS HIS PROTECTION!!!

    1. avatar James Allen Wyatt, Jr., Miss. State Univ. Class of 1961 says:

      For 33 years, until a multitude of mini-strokes just about destroyed her memory, my wife of 55 years was Secretary of Big Springs Baptist Church here in Cleveland, Tennessee and of those in attendance in that church of 200+ members among which there were several officers, I was probably the only one that was armed, having always been armed even back in 1950s when in college and subsequently in the course of working in 8 or 9 staunch anti-gun states as well as through TODAY . . . . always having been firmly convinced the Our Triune God gave us not only the ability but the responsibility as well of providing for ourselves, that in spite of His having provided for each of us who belonged to Him His Divine LEADERSHIP, GUIDANCE DIRECTION AS WELL AS HIS PROTECTION!!!

      “ASSUMPTION OF THE RISK CLEARLY, POTENTIALLY AND INEVITABLY INVITE INEVITABLE TERRIBLE TRAGIC RESULTS”;
      the validity of this astute observation yet again just proven by this latest incident that took place earlier this Sunday morning, 5 Nov. 2017, i.e. this that at this rural Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas and in which it is now reported that at least 26 dead and 20 were injured in this shooting in which the murder supposedly killed himself.
      The harsh reality is that evil is rampant in these latter days as Lucifer, his Demons and his totally devoted and totally evil human disciples wHO totally dedicated to EVIL and this fact this should be readily apparent to those who are claiming to be Christians and if they are Born Again Christians and thus indwelled by The Holy Spirit, they the legitimate Church body as a whole should most certainly be readily aware of this most obvious fact and most certainly suppose to be wise and thus knowing fact it is beyond reason that Christian Churches should choose to ignore this readily apparent fact and this ignorance is beyond reason and certainly beyond excuse.
      Only the ’secular’, the Unsaved could & should logically be expected be ignorant pf and/or ignore this glaring vivid fact!!!
      AND SO . . .
      ASSUMPTION OF THE RISK CLEARLY POTENTIALLY AND CLEARLY INEVITABLY INVITE INEVITABLE TERRIBLE TRAGIC RESULTS!

    2. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

      Lucifer isn’t such a bad guy, after all if James Allen Wyatt was cast out of Heaven and into Gehenna, he would likely be a little pissed too. So have a little sympathy for the Devil, also have some courtesy and some taste.

      In all seriousness why the reference to “Lucifer”? Was it an errant allusion to The Opposer?

      Esoteric Inanity, being rather a bit of a heretic and heathen, isn’t the most well versed in the Judeo-Christian mythos. However, he is aware that Lucifer is typically taken(by most modern scholars) to reference either a star or ancient biblical king.

      Theological Satanist, on the other hand(pun intended), often attribute Lucifer to be one of the crown princes of hell. Although in such theology, he is a completely separate and distinct entity from Satan.

      Pleased to meet James Allen Wyatt, hope that he guessed this one’s name.

      1. avatar Martin Buck says:

        None of these statements indicate any actual reading of the Bible, which has all the information needed on deities. Lucifer is described as having been one of the most senior angels, a created being, one who stood beside God at the mercy seat of Heaven. Isaiah describes how iniquity was found in him, as his self absorption and hubris grew, and with it his envy and resentment towards the Creator. After a battle with Michael and his angels, Lucifer became Satan, the Opposer, who was hurled to Earth along with the one third of the angels that he had persuaded to his point of view. From that time he has been the ruler of this world, acknowledged by Jesus during His earthly lifetime, but whose rule was destroyed by Jesus on the cross. Those who accept Christ and place their faith in Him are no longer ruled by Satan. Those who reject Christ are under Satan’s rule and subject to the evil influence of his angels (demons). Hence the despicable events of this week, and many others before now. Jesus will return soon, and Satan’s rule will end for good. Pray for that day.

  6. avatar W says:

    Sutherland Springs, you’re in our thoughts and prayers.

  7. avatar Illinois Shooter in Texas says:

    Great article explaining the good guy with a gun in this situation…

    Of course people wonder why I have a rifle under the rear seat of the truck with a couple of mags….

    1. avatar Andy R. says:

      Carrying a long gun behind the seat in your pick up, under a towel on the back seat, or in your trunk — with a stack of magazines — is a great idea provided you can do so legally.

      Who knows? You just might run across an opportunity to dispatch an Alla Snackbar screamer, to hell, in a massive firestorm of .223, 5.56 or 7.62 lead. Or some other miserable POS scumbag like the Texas church shooter.

      1. avatar MamaLiberty says:

        So, if it isn’t “legal” where you are, it’s better just to lay back and enjoy the rape – or die, as the case may be? This is, of course, one of the insane results of such “laws.” The poor woman (or man) murdered by an X or a stalker… because… pick any that apply: waiting periods, endless paperwork, inflated costs, designation as a “prohibited person” because of some non-violent incident 50 years ago… so many more.

        The most rational and effective result of a violent attack on anyone is the death of the aggressor at the hands of the intended victim, or their guardians. The weapon chosen by the attacker is not terribly material. Even bare hands can be lethal. The fact that a gun, especially in the hands of one prepared to use it well, is the most effective tool for self defense is the whole point of the right to bear arms.

        The authority of each individual to defend themselves and others, with whatever weapon seems to them to be best, must be the criteria… not whether or not some pack of politicians and their shills decide it is “legal.”

        1. avatar Martin Buck says:

          The remaining eleven apostles were enjoined by Jesus to obtain swords for their protection. That was the AR15 of the day. Peter found two, and Jesus said that was enough. Not everyone is a natural warrior, but a ratio of one to every five or six people should be enough to protect any large gathering of Christians from the depradations of Satan’s hordes. Every church should seriously think about this.

  8. avatar JoeLiberty says:

    At this point, with CHP and open carry being perhaps more available than ever, if you get caught with your pants down… It’s a tiny bit your own fault, right? There’s almost no excuse.
    The last one to fall is now “oh that could never happen here”.
    Clint Smith voice: Really? ok? Really?

    1. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Earlier today, Robert pointed out that, given its location and nature of its congregation, there were likely one or more people in the church yesterday who were, indeed, armed. Sadly, being armed doesn’t guarantee success or even being able to respond to a spree-killer’s sudden attack. Being armed just means that you, and others, have a “a” chance where otherwise there may be no chance at all.

      1. avatar Andy R. says:

        Easy to freeze. A gun easily becomes a useless iron totem if you dont have the planning, preparation and wherewithal to use it. Paralysis in the pews under these circumstances would not surprise me. Ambushed by a coward with an AR spraying 450 rounds in the middle of a church service. Who’d have ever thunk it. This makes the Charleston shooting look like a cap gun party. Sadly, an alarming trend is emerging.

        I’m afraid we’ll see the Mother of All Shootings sooner than later, with HUNDREDS killed. There’s probably some copycat killer out there fantasizing and planning it now.

        Armor up, and carry as much firepower as you can muster.

  9. avatar Esoteric Inanity says:

    Human beings, being naturally social creatures, are quite adept at working together when confronted with imminent danger. Even when neither individual knows one another or the nuances of the situation. There is something quite primal that makes such feats possible.

    As evidence, the citizens banding together to combat Whitman. Neither the bystanders shooting at the clock tower, nor the lone non-LEO that assisted officers in the assault on said tower, likely thought of anyone other than Whitman to be their adversary during the massacre. Other examples include Ally soldiers behind enemy lines in WWII being able to uncannily and effectively cooperate with other friendlies that neither had the same training nor even spoke the same language.

    The notion of confusion and blood-bathes due to armed individuals and a mass shooter is largely hyperbole, or rather hysteria. As most people are quite passive in nature(especially licensed CCL, CHP, CFP, CWP etc. holders) and unwilling to kill unless absolutely necessary. Hell some individuals are damn near incapable of killing these days, even when threatened with their life.

  10. avatar Remmi300blk says:

    Good on you for not naming the coward. Mounting evidence shows that the majority of killers are copycats. Media should stop making them by their own volition. They say that we need to “do something” and curse everyone else for not doing something. This is something they can do. https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2016/08/media-contagion-effect.pdf If they continue to name the killers, they are continuing the status quo and by their own logic are complicit since they aren’t doing something that probably would save lives.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      *I* can name the coward! His initials are APOS, if you need that expanded most here can help you. I just wish the press would pick that up in these cases.

  11. avatar WI Patriot says:

    “Sutherland Springs Shooting Proves (Again): When Seconds Count the Police are Only Minutes Away”

    I live so far out, that IF anything were to happen, A deputy(one of 2 on at any given time) is about 30min(at a minimum) away…911 out here is just a referral service…

  12. avatar former water walker says:

    Hmmm…a few minutes ago someone pounded very loudly on my door. In the dark…1st thing I did was grabagun. Wrong address but indeed I am my own 1st responder. Just like Texas…

  13. avatar Chris T from KY says:

    Rural people are different from city people. That is why big city liberals fear the country folks. The country boy or girl has guns and they are easy to get to in a hurry.

  14. avatar Ranger Rick says:

    Uniformed law enforcement rarely ever prevents planned violent criminal activities and very few non-violent crimes from taking place. More often than not they are the first element of the ‘clean up cree’, it’s just the way it is.

    Once you understand this than you are ready for the next step in planning for your family’s security.

  15. avatar CC says:

    Even in cities with highly computerized dispatch systems and cops everywhere, police arrive in time to interdict under 3% of crime. sure that is 50% better than the national average including rural areas which average 2%, but still you cannot depend on police anywhere to actually stop a violent crime being perpetrated on you.

    We don’t say: “policing is useless because it fails to stop 97% of crime in progress”. I don’t get how the gun control lobby asserts that just because armed citizens prevent about twice as many crimes as cops, but not all crimes, that this proves anything.

    Even if gun owners prevent 6% of crime attempts, this is DOUBLE what cops stop

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Right. And, what ever happened to “if it saves one life …”?

      1. avatar Shallnot BeInfringed says:

        Hmmm… come to think of it, I haven’t been hearing that one for a while. Maybe they took it out of their playbook after the stats on DGU were disseminated?

        Wait, hang on just a second… that doesn’t make sense. Why would gun banners stop lying just because it’s been proven false? Instead, they would double down and insist the stats were fabricated.

        Guess I wasn’t thinking like a Leftist…. they probably just forgot about that slogan.

  16. avatar Parnell says:

    My dad, an NYPD officer, was the head usher in our Catholic church when I was a kid. He carried at every Mass and all the parishioners and the priests knew and it never was an issue. I know for a fact that every cop in the parish carried at Mass. That was the 1950’s and I find it funny that now it’s an issue.

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