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Carrying a gun in Detroit is certainly a logical choice. While it’s a good idea anywhere – you never know if and when you’ll have to defend yourself – there are some locales that just seem to mandate packing a piece. And if the Motor City doesn’t lead that list, it’s certainly amongst ’em. So we’re glad that an un-named woman shopping at a Home Depot in Auburn Hills was strapped. We just wish she had a better idea of when the use of deadly force is justified . . .

Here’s a tip: witnessing someone exercising a ten-finger discount doesn’t really qualify.

The shooting happened in the store’s parking lot at around 2 p.m., when Home Depot security was chasing a shoplifter in his 40s who jumped into a waiting dark SUV, said Lt. Jill McDonnell, an Auburn Hills police spokeswoman.

But when the SUV began to pull away, a 48-year-old woman suddenly began firing shots at the fleeing vehicle. The vehicle escaped – but possibly has a flat tire, McDonnell said.

Apparently no one clued her in that deadly force is only legally justified to prevent death or grievous bodily harm. None of the reports of this little suburban drama name the woman in question, though they indicate she’s cooperating with police and we give her even odds of losing her concealed carry permit for her liberal use of ballistics. But if her ticket is pulled, she’ll still be able to carry the distinction of being our Irresponsible Gun Owner of the Day, though we’re not sure that will help her much in Detroit.

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  1. They’re new at it, gotta give them some time to get up to speed… and besides she saw the same thing happen in front of her house many times and those gang members weren’t arrested…..

    • They probably weren’t arrested because they are paying off the police. This woman probably doesn’t have that kind of social status.

    • And this kind of foolishness is exactly the kind of ammo we can’t give the anti-gun crowd. This woman is the perfect poster child for them to claim that concealed carriers are wanna be cops looking for a reason to shoot someone. I hope they throw the book at her and that others learn from her bad judgement.

      • Jim,

        I understand your concern. Our response is simple. If gun-grabbers insist that government totally infringe everyone’s right to keep and bear arms because a handful of people abuse that right, then we will insist that government totally infringe on gun-grabbers’ right to free speech because a handful of them have called for the extrajudicial killing of any/all people who legally keep and bear arms.

        That should shut them up.

  2. Hate to sound callous but if deadly force was authorized in the instance of theft or property damage, do you think that people would think twice about stealing?

    • There was a time in Texas when a john shot a prostitute after she took $150 then refused sex. The jury took 11 hours to acquit the defendant saying his actions were justified as he was just trying to retrieve his property.

      But nah, I don’t think anyone deserves to get shot for theft. I mean who can afford to go to the movies for $13.50 these days.

      • The law in Texas says that you can use deadly force to retrieve stolen property if you reasonably believe in can’t be retrieved any other way.

        There is no limit to the value of the property, so Texas law says that if someone steals a paper clip from you and you reasonably believe that the police are not going to investigate and get your paper clip back, then you can use deadly force to retrieve your paper clip.

        My law professor did not agree with this, and said that they law that says you can use deadly force to retrieve property if you reasonably believe it cannot be retrieved any other way really means that you can never use deadly force to retrieve property.

        • “said that the law that says you can use deadly force to retrieve property if you reasonably believe it cannot be retrieved any other way really means that you can never use deadly force to retrieve property”

          Ow! The Stupid! It Hurts! It Hurts!

    • So your inanimate property has a higher value than human life. You’re probably anti abortion because of the sanctity of life

      • Next you’re going to tell us all about the myth of “black lives matter” (except when b on w, b on b, planned unparenthood, progtards, etc)

        • B on B crime is a myth. It is has been proven that crime exists according to location. You live around people, generally, if your same race. B-on-B crime as of 2014 is at 94 percent, where 94 of the victims of crime where the victim is black, the assailant is also black. W-on-W crime is at 90 percent, with the same figures. And since Whites make up more of the population in America than Blacks, the facts show it to be that more W-on-W occurs.

          Don’t believe the hype!

      • Not all of my property, no. I probably wouldn’t shoot the dingleberry that keeps stealing post-its from my desk, or my pens. But I will shoot the mother that keeps screwing with the volume on my phone. That guy deserves a bullet..

        • The person changing the volume on your phone may be part of the nightly cleaning crew doing it inadvertently while wiping it down. Chill B4 u kill.

      • Inanimate property should never have precedence over human life. All the guards on armored trucks delivering and picking up cash should be limited to pepper spray.

      • I guess that depends. I require my car in order to make a living, and I cannot replace said car with my current funds, nor do I have theft insurance on it. If someone were to attempt to steal my car he is indirectly threatening my life. On the other hand, If someone swiped my wallet I might draw on him but I almost certainly wouldn’t shoot, nor would I shoot at a simple shoplifter, unless he did something much worse like carjack his way out of the parking lot.

      • You’re implying criminal have value. I don’t think the math works out.

        Those inanimate objects cost money, which I earned by working. That labor took time from my life that I will never get back. Insurance? That costs money, which once again leads us back to stealing from my life.

        Horse thieves used to be hung. It’s cheaper than prison, and the recidivism rate was 0%.

      • What is property and valve of said property?

        Newspaper on my front porch to the tune of a few dollars, no way.

        The property in my home, which some are family heirlooms and therefore priceless to my family, yantzee.

      • Close. What I worked for and bought represents the trading of pieces of my life for property. Depending on the property, it might be a huge chunk of my life that I can never replace. When you take my property, you’re taking my life, piece by piece. And yes, I value that more than I value a dangerous thug who would break into people’s homes, and likely kill them if he thought eliminating witnesses would reduce his chances of prison.

        However, that’s a far cry from ventilating a shoplifter.
        If the crazy lady didn’t tell the cops she was shooting out the fleeing vehicle’s tires, she’s in for a world of hurt.

        I do not give her even (50:50) odds of keeping a MI CPL, I assess the probability of losing it as greater than 0.99.

        • FedUp, Adub, and Vhyrus are on the right track.

          Consider an elderly woman on fixed income and public assistance who quite literally has NO money in reserve. She has $40 on her person and she needs that money to purchase life-sustaining medication that costs $40. When a thug steels that money from her, she is no longer able to purchase her needed life-sustaining medication. How is that not life-threatening?

          More importantly, there really is no valid reason to steal. If you are unemployed, have no food, and will most certainly starve to death, all you have to do is go door-to-door, knock on the door, and politely ask people for a donation of a sandwich or can of food. And you can even ask if you can mow their grass, trim their plants, rake their yard, etc. How many of us would refuse to help such a person? Case in point: I was in a fast food restaurant when a disheveled woman asked me if I would buy her a $1 sandwich — of course I did and so would almost any of us.

          Given that there is no valid reason to steal, and that stealing someone’s property is at best stealing part of their life and at worst costing them their life, I see no problem with using deadly force as a last resort to prevent someone from stealing our property. My intuition tells me that there would be a lot less theft if thieves might have to give up their life.

        • “Case in point: I was in a fast food restaurant when a disheveled woman asked me if I would buy her a $1 sandwich — of course I did and so would almost any of us.”

          One thing to keep in mind: Give them the food, never the money. The alcohol and drug addicted are very persuasive liars.

  3. I’m from the area..the Home Depot is far out in the suburbs….not Detroit. As a matter of fact, it’s mostly white middle to upper middle class people out that way.

    • yep – just logging in. . . . Dan, this is like Chesterfield to St. Louis. Not even the same area code with Detroit, eve.

    • That said, Pontiac (think mini Detroit) is just down the street and the mall next to this store has had a lot of trouble with shoplifting and robbery.

      • That’s basically how I thought the first time my company sent me to our Detroit office for training. But, it was actually a really nice town outside of Detroit.

        I asked the local about Detroit proper and they said they wouldn’t go near it.

  4. If this had happened in Texas, she might have been justified. If it had happened at night in Texas, it seems she would be totally justified. Shoplifting is theft, and preventing nighttime theft justifies deadly force – in Texas. During the day, burglary is required. However, there is also the lovely catchall “criminal mischief” which is also a justification [graffiti, e.g.!]

    Disclaimer: this is not legal advice, and I am not a Texan. But I enjoy reading their gun laws and look forward to moving out there as NH sinks further into the morass of east-coast progressivism. Our next senatorial race will probably be Ayotte v. Hassan – and they are both leftists.

    • You are pretty close on our laws; the caveat is that the chance of recovery of the property stolen at night is remote. If it meets that requirement then deadly force is justified. Dollar value is not considered at night. During the daytime, dollar value can be used to justify the deadly force since theft can be either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the value of the items stolen. Deadly force can be used to stop a felony in progress (with some exceptions such as DWI).

      If you decide to move to Texas, come on down! It is a great place to live and raise a family. Besides, you just cannot get good Tex-Mex or BBQ anywhere else! And we do have 4 seasons—post summer hot, post post summer warm, pre-summer hot, and extreme hot. We also do have 2 winters here—the first on occurs around Thanksgiving with an ice storm and the second one happens near the end of January first part of February for about a week. Be prepared to cook out in your short sleeves in January!

    • A cop can jump directly in front of a moving car, shoot the driver AFTER they successfully evade hitting the cop, and claim to have been in fear for their life from a two ton projectile weapon.

      I do not recommend trying that if you are a member of the serf class.

    • Ooh. That brings up an interesting justification. If the car was speeding away and there was any chance at all that pedestrians were anywhere near the car or could step out in front of the car, that is a legitimate reason for police to shoot at a fleeing suspect — because they have a reasonable fear that said vehicle (a 3000+ pound missile at deadly speeds) presents an imminent threat to cause the death of or great bodily harm to people.

      Look at it like this. If a person is standing in a parking lot and launching deadly projectiles in random directions, it would be reasonable to fear the imminent death or great bodily harm of bystanders which would justify deadly force to stop the threat. What does it matter whether the person launching deadly projectiles is using a firearm to launch deadly bullets or a gas pedal to launch a deadly vehicle?

      This could get very interesting.

    • In Georgia, the CCW’er possibly prevented injury to the car owner while the perp was committing a felony.
      Home Depot is a corporation that bans employees from carrying firearms for self defense, all the while, having some tools in HD that cost about as much as the car in Georgia was worth.

      • I’m no lawyer but the way the law is written, you can use lethal force against someone committing a “forcible felony”. Whether or not you think the police will retrieve your property is irrelevant. If you are there to stop the thief and they continue rather than leave your belongings and flee, that theft has just become “forcible”. You have no legal obligation to allow a person to just walk off with your property. And as soon as you confront them, they have two choices. Take property by force, which may get them shot, or stop the act and escape. At that point, you are not authorized to shoot. In GA that is.

      • See my comment above. You could (easily) argue someone speeding through a busy parking lot presents a reasonable, imminent threat to cause the death of or great bodily harm to bystanders. That satisfies the criteria to use deadly force to stop the threat. As I stated above, this could get interesting.

        • So what happens when that vehicle that was being driven suddenly becomes an unguided missile?

          It’s one thing if you manage to shoot the driver to stop them in a safe place during a high speed chase; in your example, such a thing would be impossible. Nor is there any justification to shoot otherwise. Would be laughed out of court as a defense.

        • What happens when that vehicle becomes an unguided missile? The exact same thing that happens when police shoot and disable the driver or the vehicle.

          If the requirement/justification for shooting a fleeing vehicle is good enough for police, it should be good enough for people who are not the police.

          Furthermore, we could make the same argument to say that we should never use deadly force on a violent criminal with a firearm. If we deliver a debilitating strike to the criminal, the criminal could squeeze the trigger any number of times on their way down and there is no telling where the bullets will go. Does that mean we should not attempt to stop a criminal holding a firearm?

  5. As far as we know, she could have been law enforcement. Her name was not given, she is talking to police and no mention of arrest at TTAG.

  6. I’m not doing a damn thing to stop to stop a shoplifter at Home Depot. I was just there and it took me 20 minutes to get a freakin’ employee to help me out. I will protect people-not merchandise…

    • Former Water Walker,

      I would not use deadly force to stop a shoplifter, either.

      So, let’s make this a lot more interesting. What if a pedestrian had to jump out of the way of the getaway vehicle and/or pedestrians were milling about the parking lot in the potential paths of the getaway vehicle? I am pretty confident that a “reasonable person” would conclude that such a vehicle presents an imminent threat of causing the death of or great bodily harm to the pedestrians in the parking lot. Does that not satisfy the legal requirements for the use of deadly force to stop a credible, imminent threat of death or great bodily harm?

      • And what is your point? That’s what I stated-just practicing your typing skills? Defending people -not property…BTW whenever there is an “active shooter” thread on here there is a wide range of opinion-“I’m only defending my own,I’m shooting the bastard ,I’m waiting for the po-leece,I’m leaving”. I don’t PRETEND I have all the right answers. I also don’t carry a gun very much in Illinois(lots and lots of “gun free zones”).

    • “The tire made a furtive movement …”

      You sir win the Intertubez for the day!

      (I am still laughing out loud.)

  7. This was on the radio this morning, big food for the anti types in the area. “You gots some xplainin to do Lucy”

  8. I simply don’t understand the first sentence of this piece. Why is it logical to have to carry in Deteoit? Is it the Wild Wild West? It baffles me why there is this inexplainable fear of the demons “out there”. Really, what are the chances? Guns I know are a fabric of this country to hunt and protection. However, I think the protection thing has been taken to the extreme. To many times its shoot first and ask questions later. It’s beyond.

    • It’s logical to carry anytime or anywhere you want. But it’s not just logical in urban Detroit, it’s prudent. RoboCop was strangely prophetic.

    • Too many times shoot first and ask questions later? Go look up the rates at which CCWs are pulled from the typical population. It’s actually far less common for a person with a CCW to commit an act that would merit pulling a CCW (such as commiting a felony) than a person in the general population. It’s not the wild west, the vast majority of people who legally carry believe de-escalation of situations and avoiding trouble are critical.

      Also, the chief of police in Detroit says it’s a good idea?

    • Lets back this one up. A right should not have to be subjected to tests, reason, or logic. It simply is. A person carries simply because they want to or just because they can.

  9. I’m withholding judgment….It’s Detroit, and legally you’re allowed to use deadly force to stop a felony. No one’s caught up to the vehicle yet, so you can’t tell from this article if she hit the vehicle 10 of 10 shots, or 1 of 10….She may have hit the driver. Too early to tell. If this was a LEO it wouldn’t even be on the news. If it was NYC, we’d have innocent citizens all over the street.

    15 years ago I worked on a project in Warren, MI and Detroit. It was as bad as Beirut then, its worse now.

  10. “Apparently no one clued her in that deadly force is only legally justified to prevent death or grievous bodily harm.”

    Soooo……maybe the liberals are right? Maybe there should be mandatory training and licensing to ensure that those carrying in public, at least, know what the laws are and what constitutes illegal and reckless behavior on their part?

  11. Not that it really matters much but I suppose there is absolutely no chance of ever reaching TTAG on Home Depot WiFi now.

  12. The movie from the 80’s called “With This Gun” had a “Dirty Harry” worshiper that practiced quick draw all the time in his room that was plastered with movie posters. When the armed robbers fed the store he stood in the parking lot road right in front of them and unloaded his 44 mag into the onrushing escape SUV. Justified, he stood his ground in the road. No double standards put DC politicians on Obamacare and SS.Thanks for your support and vote. Pass the word.

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