Defensive Gun Use of the Day: Atlanta Carjacking Target Adapts, Improvises, Survives

 Scene of failed carjacking in Atlanta (courtesy

“Police say a woman reported getting in to her car here along Blue Ridge Avenue when Fontana tapped on the window with his gun and attempted to carjack her,” reports. “Once he got inside, he was struggling to drive her car with a manual transmission and placed the gun in his lap. The woman says she picked up the gun and tried to get out of the vehicle. He pulled her back and bit her twice leaving visible marks. at that point she pulled the trigger and shot him . . . ‘here was a man in the middle of the street and they were running to him and wrestling him, trying to get him under control,’ said neighbor Shawn Pagliarini. “He was screaming, ‘I’m already hurt don’t make it any worse.’ Result! Or is it? TTAG reader BS isn’t entirely convinced . . .

Cue the antis’ hand-wringing about:

1) With universal background checks he wouldn’t have had the gun
2) She had no business handling the gun without either extensive training, or a police or military background
3) He was such a nice boy and didn’t deserve to be shot – Life is more important than property
4) It’s her own fault for being in a bad neighborhood and setting herself up for trouble – She was asking for it
5) Gun violence is all the fault of the NRA and their Stand Your Ground and (in Georgia) Guns Everywhere laws.
6) Let’s lobby the city to post Guns Prohibited signs so this won’t happen again.

His name will quickly be added to the list of Gun Violence Victims.


  1. avatar Gunr says:

    That last one, number 6, really made my day.

    1. avatar John says:

      Same here!

    2. avatar Gary says:

      Pisses me off…

  2. avatar GenghisQuan says:

    You forgot #7: See, you *are* more likely to have your gun used against you.

    1. avatar BDub says:


    2. avatar JasonM says:

      I tip my hat to you, sir!

    3. avatar BLAMMO says:

      Yeah, we should take all the guns away from the cops and give them to the criminals. That way, when one of the poor dumb bastards pulls a gun on one of us, we can just take it away and shoot him.

    4. avatar Andrew Stevens says:

      Brilliant. I love it.

  3. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    Driving a manual transmission vehicle is a great way to insure that people don’t take your vehicle.

    1. avatar Ing says:

      I wanted to buy a truck with a manual transmission. There weren’t any.

      1. avatar styrgwillidar says:

        Not true. But you may have to visit dealerships that cater to construction or agricultural businesses.

        I have a 2006 Dodge Ram 3500 diesel with a stickshift, and manual door locks/windows. Got pulled over the other day. My policy is to sit tight with my hands on the steering wheel until the officer is right there at the window before I move. Busy highway so the officer comes up on the passenger side. Gets an annoyed look on his face as he taps on the glass motioning me to roll down the window. I lean slowly over and crank the window down. Officer goes from annoyed to bursting out laughing- “Oh my God. Manual windows!” I said, “Yeah, I figured if you saw me diving sideways to crank it down you’d get a bit nervous.” He says probably, does the license/reg/ins card things than just lets me go.

    2. avatar CA.Ben says:

      I bought my Ford Ranger new in 2010. I wanted a manual 4WD. The closest one to me had to be driven down from a dealership 350 miles away. Manual drivers are definitely a dying breed. But I love mine!

      1. avatar Gregolas says:

        “Car & Driver” sponsors a campaign called, “Save the Manuals!”

      2. avatar Mike the Limey says:

        Bought one new in 2007 & love it.
        More responsive than an automatic & more economical too.

        1. avatar Dave Boik says:

          do you have a “Gun Free Zone” sticker for the bumper? He wont be able to legally carjack you with that sticker on your truck. lol

  4. avatar Ing says:

    The antis are absolutely right: life is more important than property.

    They just tend to reach the wrong conclusion from the premise. So far from being reason to just let criminals have their way, it’s the strongest reason possible for fighting back.

    If life is more important than property, then anyone who threatens my life in pursuit of my property is clearly and completely in the wrong, and I am only contributing to the wrong if don’t try to stop it. Therefore, because my life has value, I am not only justified, but *obligated* to use whatever any means necessary to defend it.

    1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

      BINGO! We have a winner!

    2. avatar William Burke says:

      This is precisely what my Buddhist teacher taught, and it caused some looks of consternation amongst those who choose Liberalism (because it was the “correct” way to be).

      In short, to achieve human life is the most precious of achievements on Earth. For one to choose not to protect and preserve it is to show the utmost disrespect for life.

      And it is the worst thing one can ever squander.

      1. avatar Dave Boik says:

        So, shoot the perp or not?

    3. avatar Delmarva Chip says:

      If someone shows that they are willing to steal another person’s property, there’s no sensible reason to believe that they respect another person’s life. They’ve already proven that they don’t respect other people.

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        Are you saying that we should not entrust our lives to the good-will of violent criminals who threatened our lives and want to steal our property? I am shocked, SHOCKED I say.

      2. avatar Drew says:

        Who says this was a property crime? If you wanted some ones car with the least trouble possible wouldn’t you force the owner out? Why was she still in the car? Why was she forced apparently from the drivers seat the passenger side and taken with the vehicle? Seems more like an assault with potential rape and likely homicide.

        Any time someone assaults you with apparent lethal force (assault in the legal meaning of the word) it is simply prudent to consider that to be an imminent threat. A lawyer might argue that he “only wanted the car-purse-TV” but once someone is directing lethal force at you whatever his ultimate goal the fact is you are a moment from death if he either makes a mistake or choses to attack. Don’t forget that when telling the cops your story, he may have said “get out of the car” but since he has a gun to your head it IS assault with a deadly weapon and you DO have just cause to fight back with equally deadly force.

        1. avatar Dave Boik says:

          anytime a weapon s used, consider it a threat to life and limb

    4. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

      I agree. The issue isn’t whether a defender values his property more than life, such that he’d take a life in its defense. Rather, the issue is that an attacker values someone else’s property more than life, such that he’d take someone’s life or even forfeit his own in its acquisition.

      “My precious baby didn’t deserve to die over an iPad!”, a thug’s family would cry, for example. I agree. Then he shouldn’t have attacked someone over it and traded his life for it. Poor decision making on a vicious thug’s part is not a moral quandary on an innocent citizen’s part.

  5. avatar SouthernPatriot says:

    #4 is the excuse spoken by all rapists when asked why the committed the crime.

    Good list.

  6. avatar Mediocrates says:

    No no. We need to post signs establishing gun free roads and paths. That’ll learn’em!

  7. avatar cubby123 says:

    She only pulled the trigger once?huh? why!!!???

    1. avatar Hannibal says:

      Maybe it was a contact shot and the gun went out of battery…

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      You are confused. It was clearly a stroke of luck that the gun was pointed in a safe direction when it “went off”.

  8. avatar James says:

    Why not add his name to #6. Christopher Dorner, the Tsarnev brothers and Nadal Hassan are already on it.

  9. avatar Ralph says:

    Gun violence is all the fault of the NRA and their Stand Your Ground and (in Georgia) Guns Everywhere laws.

    Certainly not. It’s actually because of global warming man made climate change and it’s all George Bush’s fault.

    1. avatar Jen Z says:


  10. avatar citizen_salty says:

    Go team!

  11. avatar Barstow Cowboy says:

    Kenik said that when you take someone else’s gun away you’re supposed to throw it away since you don’t know whether or not it’ll function properly. Apparently this lady didn’t get the training DVD.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Right, but Kenik can throw it away because he’s got three (at least) of his own. This lady did not.

      1. avatar Dave Boik says:

        you do know that if she doesn’t have a CPL she cant use the perps gun. it has to be in her name.

        1. avatar Matt in FL says:

          Based in your other comments, this might be a joke. If it’s not, I’m calling bullshit unless you have legal citations.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      I don’t get it. Why not point it at him (ie, in a safe direction) and pull the trigger a few times to see if it functions correctly?

  12. avatar scooter says:

    Lovely story, happy ending. Hope she got that bite cleaned, she might catch a$$hole syndrome.

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      If he’s an IV drug user (as many desperation criminals are), there’s a serious risk of HIV or hepatitis.

      1. avatar jack says:

        HIV generally isn’t transmitted by saliva, though if he was bleeding in his mouth the risk would certainly be more significant. However there are plenty of bacteria and germs that can come from the mouth that could lead to some nasty infections for sure.

  13. avatar Janitor says:

    She’s obviously racist.

  14. avatar chris says:

    A friend of a friend on Facebook posted the story and one of the commentators said a cop he knows in the area said she shot him three times in the chest and once in the crotch..don’t know if that’s true but I would like to believe it

  15. avatar DaveM says:

    Where is the hate ?
    She is a gun grabber
    In a good way

    1. avatar Maineuh says:

      Ahhhhhh! Nice.

  16. avatar S.CROCK says:

    It is true that the anti freedom crowd will try lame excuse 1, part of 2, 4, 5, and 6. They will only try part of 2 because the obviously don’t care about our military vets. Diane Feinstein made that clear. They also will not try excuse 3 because they are making it increasingly clear that they don’t value life.

  17. avatar Hannibal says:

    There’s a lot to be said for situational awareness… and not just sliding in your car and dicking around for a few minutes while the guy who has been following you for two blocks gets within carjacking range before you get going.

    1. avatar Old Gun says:

      Situational Awareness is such a nice term if you have heard of it before or trained using it.
      It was just plain to difficult for the current generation to understand the simple concept of paying attention to what is going on around you.

  18. avatar GS650G says:

    He possibly could have graduated from carjacking to rape and murder. Let’s hope he gets a fatal infection and checks out soon.

    1. avatar Dave Boik says:

      you have to know how to drive before graduating from car jacking unless you went to school in Detroit. then its a go!

  19. avatar BigFire says:

    You forgot to add Koch Brother’s being responsible.

  20. avatar Durk Simmons says:

    too bad she can’t keep the gun…

  21. avatar Lfshtr says:

    Finder keepers on the gun, wonder if it was nine or forty five, maybe she shot him in his ba, oops better not finish the sentence. I hope she puts a marking on her fender, just like the ole fighter pilots did when they shot one down.

    1. avatar Rich Grise says:

      Well, he isn’t dead yet, so is a mark really appropriate?

      1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        One has only to shoot down the aeroplane; surviving occupants do not negate the kill.

        Same here; for him the war is over.

  22. avatar sightpicture says:

    All of the above, carry on sir

  23. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    Not just carjacker, but kidnapper. Probably would-be rapist and murderer as well.

    He’s already hurt: make it worse. Make it much worse.

  24. avatar Apotter says:

    She took the gun from him and attempted to leave. He pulled her back in and bit her. She tried to leave peacefully. He’s the blame for his getting shot.

    1. avatar Dave Boik says:

      if she volunteered to drive so he wouldn’t tear up her trans im sure he would have appreciated it and left her alone

  25. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

    Was he under 25? If so, shannon is gonna have an issue with another “child” being shot, although it will help her stats when MDA’s next ad comes out

  26. avatar Defens says:

    I’m going to post “Guns Prohibited” signs the doors of my truck to prevent carjackings.

    1. avatar Rich Grise says:

      Personally, I’d prefer this one.

  27. avatar archangel187 says:

    In this case, a manual safety got the guy possibly killed.

  28. avatar Vitor says:

    What I find very pathetic is that he struggled with a manual transmission, something I learn to deal with when I was 18. Those funny americans spoiled by automatic transmissions.

  29. avatar Gregory says:

    He will sue her for his pain and suffering from the gunshot wound. If a liberal jury hears the case, he will win!

    1. avatar Dave Boik says:

      she should have given him a warning shot first. he called a “no fair time out”

  30. avatar Lfshtr says:

    I don’t think he can win in court, as soon as he entered her vehicle with a gun his ass is jail, most likely prison. One mistake she made was she should have emptied the gun in his ass, hopefully it was one of those 17 rounders. I can hear it now, but judge the weapon just kept on banging, hee, hee. That just goes to show ya single shot pieces are just toys. Keep safe out there, lock your doors.

  31. avatar jerome says:

    Please let me know how turns out this country is going down hill fast its ashame

  32. avatar I.R.A. says:

    Hope he dos not make it, AND I think she shod be awarded the gun for bravery. The city shod recognize her and promote this to detour other crimes.

  33. avatar jimmy says:

    That’s another reason why I drive a stick! Even my car salesman couldn’t drive it! LOL!

  34. avatar David Friedman says:

    If the gun was in his lap, she should have shot his balls off…

  35. avatar SouthAfricanWhiteFemale says:

    First time I have been to this site and I find this treasure!!!! What a beautiful story! I am so happy!!! In South Africa violence has become an accepted way of life. It really sucks. That does not mean I have to be a victim though. Examples like this proves to me I can prevail. KUDOS TO HER!!!

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