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Defensive Gun Use of the Day: There’s No Such Thing as a Bulletproof Restraining Order Edition

According to a statement prepared by Edgartown (MA) attorney Sean E. Murphy, “Kenneth Bloomquist broke into the West Tisbury home and shot his wife with a shotgun he brought with him. Kenneth Bloomquist then pulled out a handgun and tried to shoot his wife with it. During a struggle, the gun discharged and Kenneth Bloomquist was shot.” Oy vey on the usual passive construction. What would be wrong with saying “During a struggle, Cynthia Bloomquist gained control of her husband’s pistol, then shot and killed him”? Anyway, reports that Cynthia Bloomquist is in stable condition after surgery for a gunshot wound to the torso. And here’s the kicker: “she had previously been denied a restraining order against her husband.” Not that that really matters . . .

Even if a court had granted Mrs. B a restraining order against Mr. B, what difference would that have made? Clearly Kenneth Bloomquist wanted to murder his wife and didn’t give a flying you-know-what about the consequences. If a restraining order had been in place . . . nothing. The police would still only be there to mop-up the aftermath.

Early reports suggested Mrs. Bloomquist fired a second gun that was in her own possession. Her lawyer’s statement asserts that her husband brought his own murder weapon to his former digs. In any case, Mrs. B. could have prepared for an assault by her so-called better half—an event that she clearly feared— if she’d had a gun on her hip.

If Mrs. Bloomquist had home carried, she might even have avoided that whole “getting shot by a scattergun and life-and-death struggle for someone else’s gun while bleeding live a sieve” thing. Just sayin’ . . .

Anyway, result: Cynthia Bloomquist survived a murder attempt. That’s what any rational human being would call a result. Afterwards, she called 911. The local tac ops guys responded. The police and DA had a look. No charges were filed against Mrs. Bloomquist. Life goes on (as it does).

Psychologically, not so fast. As this case illustrates, a successful defensive gun use (DGU) is a terrible thing. At best. But dying at the hands of a murderous attacker is worse. Always. [h/t LeftShooter]


  1. avatar ST says:

    On the topic of unfortunate implications, the strict gun laws which helped put this unfortunate woman at the mercy of a murderous fool were partly signed by one Mitt Romney, Republican Presidential Candidate. It is a sad commentary on the status of our nation when that’s the *better* alternative to continued abuse of power under the current Democrat administration.

    1. avatar Tim McNabb says:


    2. avatar Ralph says:

      No. I despise Romney, but what you said is untrue. Romney signed the renewal of the AWB, making it permanent. When it comes to CCW, he made it cheaper by extending the length of permits and keeping the cost down.

      1. avatar ST says:

        That is why I stated “partly” in my response. In that “part” the permanent addition of the AWB still stands as an obstacle to someone owning a firearm.

        1. avatar Ralph says:

          Nah, the AWB is majorly stupid, but it hampers choices only. I live in MA and I have plenty of guns and a LTC-A (unrestricted license to carry).

  2. avatar Ralph says:

    During a struggle, Cynthia Bloomquist gained control of her husband’s pistol, then shot and killed him has no flava. I suggest instead: “During a struggle, Cynthia Bloomquist gained control of her punk-ass husband’s pistol, then shot and killed the son of a bitch, who had it coming.” See, that’s concise and powerful.

    1. avatar Steven Robertson says:


  3. avatar bontai Joe says:

    Glad that the woman survived the initial attack and I hope she recovers both physically and mentally. Her having to shoot a total stranger attacking her would be bad enough, but she had to end the life of a man she was once married to. Lot’s of extra emotional stuff to deal with there, I am sure. I hope she does well, and can lives a long and happy life from this point onwards.

  4. avatar ScottA says:

    I don’t know the facts of this case but she should be taken into custody immediately and we can let the courts sort this out. It’s only fair. “Justice for Kenneth!”

    1. avatar Derek says:

      How can someone just not be arrested after shooting someone? I don’t understand. After she gained control of the pistol, Kenneth was no longer a threat. She shot and killed an unarmed man because she’s a trigger happy, vigilante, wanna-be cop, gun nut.

      Justice For Kenneth!


      1. avatar gen4n9 says:

        She could have at least just shot him in the leg or arm to wound him, she didn’t have to kill him. I says she’s blood thirty.

        1. avatar Robert Farago says:

          Actually, she’s 63.

        2. avatar Hazzard Bagg says:

          I was surprised by their ages, too—and by their jobs: She’s an emerita from MIT, he ran an aerial photography company in Rehoboth.

          I want to know more. Why were two people who had so much so pissed off at each other?

          PS: Kudos to TTAG for being the place where I found this fascinating story (which for us is local news).

  5. avatar AK says:

    ” Not that that really matters . . . Even if a court had granted Mrs. B a restraining order against Mr. B, what difference would that have made?”

    Doesn’t being the subject of a restraining order disallow you from owning guns? Its on the 4473, and if you are subject to a restraining order after you’ve purchased, doesn’t the government take away those firearms?

    1. avatar ST says:

      Indeed the Gov. would do so. Not that it would matter;one can commit murder just as easily with a knife , baseball bat, stick, automobile, can of paint, a strong enough length of string, or the old standby of bare human hands.

    2. avatar ScottA says:

      Which is crap in itself with how easy it is to get restraining orders. You lose your second amendment rights without due process. Restraining orders are BS at every level and basically used as leverage in divorce court. At the point you would actually need a restraining order, you should have something else to protect you and a gun is the most cost effective method of self defense.

  6. avatar cigr says:

    A woman in her 60’s survived a shotgun blast to the chest and went on to get the handgun away from him.

    I’m betting it was loaded with birdshot.

  7. avatar Aharon says:

    “Upstairs in the house they found Kenneth Bloomquist dead and Cynthia Bloomquist with a gunshot wound to her torso”.
    — I was curious to learn if he was wounded or killed. He shoots her. They struggle. She shoots him. He dies. She lives. What a story.

    I do not support the ex-husband intent to murder his ex-wife.
    We do not know the details of either one’s overall character and moral history prior to this event, and what occurred during their divorce process. Did this guy simply have a short irrational temper, was he a selfish egomaniac, and was he always a jerk unconcerned with harming others? Does he have a history of proven violence against others? Did something else happen to him that made an average or possibly even a good man snap and lose it feeling victimized, stepped upon, and enraged enough to commit violence? I really have no idea since I don’t have the detailed facts and big picture understanding of their past relationship. It is interesting that one out of six adult male suicides occurs during the divorce process often do to how men are treated by the Courts.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      All true, Aharon, but still. . . . I don’t care if he was a bad man, mentally ill, stupid, stressed out or if he was toilet trained too soon when he was a kid. The salient fact is that the dude tried to off his wife.

      I think that murdering one’s spouse should be discouraged, and I’m glad to read that Cynthia Bloomquist did exactly that.

      1. avatar Aharon says:

        Agreed, as I stated above his actions that day were wrong. A snapshot of a moment in time never gives the big picture. I wonder what that picture might be.

  8. avatar KWAL says:

    “…During a struggle, the gun discharged and Kenneth Bloomquist was shot.” Oy vey on the usual passive construction. What would be wrong with saying “During a struggle, Cynthia Bloomquist gained control of her husband’s pistol, then shot and killed him”?”

    There must be some legal reason shootings are always described this way. They would probably have to say he allegedly pulled the trigger to avoid a lawsuit. Do you know Ralph? It’s about time we understood why it always says , “then the gun discharged”. Is it just lazy reporting without looking into the actual cause of the discharge, or are they just covering their asses?

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Is it just lazy reporting without looking into the actual cause of the discharge, or are they just covering their asses?

      Yes, it’s lazy reporting. Recognized purveyors of the news haven’t had much to worry about since New York Times v. Sullivan.

      FYI, blogs don’t get the same protection.

    2. avatar CarlosT says:

      The most charitable thing I can think of that would lead to that construction is the investigators don’t actually know exactly how the incident played out, and therefore the reporters don’t know either.

  9. Re: “Even if a court had granted Mrs. B a restraining order against Mr. B, what difference would that have made?”

    Laws do not keep people from misbehaving. Laws only provide statutory consequences for misbehavior.

    Laws do not prevent wrongdoing; laws clarify wrongdoing after the offense has been committed.

    Passing a law against an already illegal behavior will not prevent the misbehavior from continuing to occur.

    While the consequence of violation may restrain most rational people, most rational people still have moments of irrationality, self-interest being the principle baseline.

    The higher the disposition to self interest the higher the inclination to misbehavior, regardless of consequence.

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