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“Farris Cole, the owner of Cole’s Sundry Grocery convenience store, said he spent the night in his shop after multiple break-ins,” reports. “Cole said his store was broken into through the roof earlier this week, and several items were stolen including ice pops and beer.” Guess what happened next?

Cole said the suspects returned, but this time he was ready.

“They come across the top of the building; they come in, and when they come in, I sat there waiting on them,” Cole said. “And when they did I said ‘I’ve been waiting on y’all for a long time.’”

Uh . . . setting a trap for burglars who steal beverages? Maybe that’s something the cops should do? Or perhaps Mr. Cole should have erected barriers to entry. Or installed an alarm.

In any case, Mr. Cole was a man with a plan. An armed man. And you know what they say about plans and first contact with the enemy . . .

“They walked around there and I put it on them and made them lay in the floor,” Cole said. “And while they were laying in the floor, he was trying to get a hold of his gun to shoot me, and I shot him in the ear. I thought I had killed him because I turned him over, he was hollering you know, you shot me in the ear. So about that time, the police got here.”

Police said the suspect who was shot was taken to the Panola Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries, and the other was taken to the Desoto County Juvenile Facility.

Both face charges of burglary and larceny. At this time, Cole does not face any criminal charges.

The report doesn’t mention whether or not the young miscreant was, indeed, armed.

And while we have plenty of examples of a police officer avoiding prosecution for shooting someone the cop thought had a gun, I suspect that Mr. Cole would have faced severe legal consequences if he had put a bullet into the young thief’s brain.

So, while the result is satisfactory, I reckon the process disqualifies Mr. Cole from kudos. You?

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  1. From I see here, I wouldn’t vote to convict the store owner of any crime even if he had killed the criminal. I would caution him about turning criminals over to see if they are dead though.

  2. Personally I’d call that an ambush, or maybe a stakeout, but not a trap.

    Deadly traps such as shotgun triggers tied to the door handle, are usually illegal.

    As to the rest, while I think the owner has a right to defend his property, and himself if threatened (and you could make a good case for presuming a burgler to be armed), I also think he’s lucky the kid isn’t dead.

      • I wouldn’t call it a trap or an ambush.

        I would call it gaurding my store that’s already been broken into before. And protecting my property.

        The bad guys are lucky he didn’t shoot sooner.

        I do think we need to change our legal system to offer more protection to crime victims who shoot people. I think we should take murder off the table entirely and by statute. Limit the prosecution to manslaughter or negligent honicide if the person shot was there to commit a property or violent crime , evening a clear saw if they are on their knees begging for mercy hey share some responsibility for breaking in.

        • Fully concur, most places it is still legal to protect yourself and your property. Is it me or does this “article” seem to have an anti-gun slant to it?

        • Fully concur, most places it is still legal to protect yourself and your property. Is it me or does this “article” seem to have an anti-gun slant to it?

        • I’ve noticed there can be a fair amount of anti gun slant among the articles and readership when it comes to defending personal property. Not just here, but among gun owners and sites everywhere. This was recently expressed in the article about someone on the roof. For some reason, a lot of people seem to think protecting your property is illegal, or immoral, or if it isn’t, then it should be. Maybe I’m just too old, or too southern, but when I was a kid, we knew not to fuck around on other people’s property, because there was a very real possibility we could be shot.

        • @Hank,
          I’ve noticed that too.Seems that there are a lot of “fair weather” gunners. The primary reason to own a firearm is to protect yourself and property be it from a bad guy, foreign invaders, or an out of control government. I can’t understand the mindset of “it’s ok to own a gun if you punch paper, hunt, or do reviews but doom on you if you protect yourself or your stuff”.

        • Hank and BradP,

          There are two very simple reasons why we should be very reluctant to bludgeon, stab, slash, or shoot someone:
          (1) Force/punishment should be proportional to the threat that the attacker presents. I teenager walking across your property is merely trespassing and should not lose their life for it.
          (2) Once you apply deadly force, you cannot take it back which means deadly force does not leave any room for error. If you can protect yourself and your property from harm/loss without bludgeoning, stabbing, slashing, or shooting someone, that allows for mistakes.

          In case reason number (2) isn’t clear, consider this example. You are returning home and see someone walking down the road holding your unique garden gnome. You know for an absolute fact that the person is holding your unique garden gnome, conclude that they are stealing it, shoot them, and promptly congratulate yourself for stopping a scumbag thief. And then you find out that someone neighborhood kid had taken your gnome in the middle of the night and left it on the street 200 yards away as a prank … and a thoughtful jogger who found the gnome was walking door-to-door trying to return the garden gnome to its rightful owner. Oops! Saying, “Sorry, I was mistaken.” is little comfort to the jogger who is now going to die for trying to return your property.

    • It wasn’t an ambush, stakeout, trap, snare, or whatever. It was an armed business owner working overtime.

      • I second this statement. Although I don’t think I would personally lay in wait for a burgler unless there had already been multiple break ins and no action from the cops. (Maybe the case here?)

        • I might lie in wait for a soda thief, armed with my GoPro in hand and pistol in my holster. I would shoot the shit out of the miscreants with my camera, with narration, but I’m damned if I would shoot a neighborhood kid for stealing ice pops. That is ridiculous. If they actually produced a weapon, blow ’em to bits, fine, but I consider that unlikely.

        • LarryinTX
          Unanswered questions here. Article said: And while they were laying on the floor he was trying to get his gun and shoot me.
          So, did he actually see a gun? If not, what made him think the perp was reaching for a gun?

          I’m assuming most states will authorize the use of deadly force if the victim has reason to believe their life is in danger.
          It’s too bad if a teenager gets shot for stealing ice pop’s, whatever the hell that is, but if they want to live in an adults world, then they must pay an adults penalty.

      • He’d be a lot more legally secure if he had said that instead of “I’ve been waiting on y’all for a long time.”

        People say talking to the cops is bad, well, talking to the press can be worse if you try and make yourself out to be Dirty Harry.

  3. He should have used a game camera or two strategically placed around the store. He’s lucky he’s not dead. I vote for no kudos.

    • I don’t get your logic here. Are you faulting the personal confrontation? How about if he hired a security guard? Would that have been too extreme?

        • There is an element of deterance but they also help catch criminals. I had a trailer stolen last year, and since it was parked under the watchful eye of a camera, the guy who stole it is doing hard time, and I got my trailer back. (cops said his record was so bad, he would have gone to prison for stealing a pack of gum)

        • That,s a good way to get a camera stolen. We thought the same thing when our mailbox kept getting smashed. We hung a game camera in a tree to get pictures, but apparently the perps heard the camera, because, not only was our mailbox smashed again, but they stole a 150 dollar game camera too.

  4. Morally the store owner did not wrong. If what he did was illegal, then the laws are immoral and we need to change the law. If a cop shoots someone grabbing a gun is that immoral? I am so confused with all this moral relativity.

  5. Not a trap. Staying up late to watch your property normal. A trap would be like that guy that intentionaly left his garage door open and a wallet or purse in the open so he could get to shoot someone.

  6. If Cole shot the miscreant in the ear while aiming at his ear, then kudos. If he shot the ear while aiming at the head, then no kudos since further marksmanship training is needed.

    • Your assuming Farris Cole is a “black man”
      You must be living back in the 50’s. Have you watched any of the latest “Bachelorett” TV series? No, I don’t watch it either, but my wife does. The current episodes have a very attractive black women dating a bunch of men, as a perspective husband. I was surprised to see that around half the men are white. And please don’t anyone ask me why I was “surprised”, I’m not in a mood to answer.

      • This was in Batesville Mississippi you can pretty well bet the husband is black also. If you watched the TV interview you would have seen that Ferris is black.

  7. Not a trap at all. These two retards should’nt have been breaking in. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. Maybe they’ll learn their lesson now. Kudos to him for not rolling over and just crying about what he would’ve done on some blog online.

  8. Don’t mess with a man’s ice pops and beer. Oh, and kudos for doing what the cops couldn’t or wouldn’t do. People can “take the law into their own hands” because the law belongs to “the people”. Not the cops, lawyers and judges. They’re just our hirelings and when they don’t their job, it defaults to us.

    • “People can “take the law into their own hands” because the law belongs to “the people”. Not the cops, lawyers and judges.”

      +1000 Exactly right. Don’t we keep saying that the cops don’t have ANY duty to protect YOU or YOUR’s? Only society at large?

    • People can “take the law into their own hands” because the law belongs to “the people”. Not the cops, lawyers and judges. They’re just our hirelings and when they don’t their job, it defaults to us.

      Best comment in the whole thread.

    • I’m sure the cops would have laughed in the owners face if he would have asked them to stake out his place.

    • Hank,

      Now you are on the right track! Far, far too many people regard the Almighty Government as, well, an infallible god.

      My only quibble with your statement is that, if the law belongs to the people, then mob rule is permissible. That means 80% of the population can declare that it is lawful to grope women who have strawberry-blond hair and green eyes … and it is therefore righteous and lawful since “the people” said so.

      I agree that police, lawyers, prosecutors, and judges are our hirelings and should be carrying out justice. The trick is making sure that the people define justice … and that justice does not allow for violating someone’s rights simply because a large majority of the population said it was okay.

      • I’m not advocating mob rule, simply upholding common law. It’s commonly held that robbery, rape, murder and assault are crimes. When our appointed representatives fail in their duty for whatever reason, then we either act on our own behalf or accept lawlessness as the norm.

    • I agree wholeheartedly, I would add that the respect conferred upon our instruments of justice is proportional to how they live up to the high standards we should hold them to.

  9. It’s HIS store, and he has a right to be there. That’s what stand-your-ground laws are for.

    In any case, these criminals are vermin, and it is good that they are off the streets (at least until they plea bargain for a lighter sentence).

  10. Booby-trapping property should be made legal as long as an “approved” warning sign is posted by the main door or property line. It would help cut down on property crimes and planetary overpopulation. While we’re at it, require Gun Free Homes to have signs stating that status.

  11. Guessing that damage to the premises and dealing with the insurance company is what prompted the stakeout. Dealing with any insurance company makes me just about mad enough to shoot someone, and he should have shot him in the balls in order to prevent reproduction.

  12. Poor folks don’t get that level of service from the police – especially after lawyers and politicians in places like NY City went after the cops who used to do exactly such things – guys like NYPD Stakeout Unit. Remember them? Guys like Jimmy Cirillo? That’s what they did. They’d go into a business that was getting repeatedly robbed, set up shop, and usually shoot the robbers in the act. The difference was that Jimmy, being a champion marksman, usually ended up hitting the robbers with lethal results.

    Given that Mississippi isn’t exactly rolling in disposable tax income and wealth, it’s probably not within the local PD’s resources to detail anyone to sit on an establishment to await re-appearance of the criminal element.

    This was a righteous shoot, period. The man was inside the confines of his business. The robbers entered by altering the building – that’s breaking – and dropping to the floor from the hole in the roof. That’s entering. This was apparently their third or successive time doing this, and every individual incident of B&E becomes a separate insurance claim, with its own deductible. That’s a little tough for a business owner to sustain.

    Anyway, if you had made an effort to look up the Mississippi statutes on use of force in such situations, you would have learned that MS statute § 97-3-15 explicitly gives the presumption of reasonable fear to individuals who are within the confines of their business when someone forcibly breaks & enters said business. There is no need to establish the presence of a firearm upon the criminals so entering the business – the law gives the business owner/employees the presumption of reasonable fear, just as if they had seen a lethal weapon being employed by the criminals. Allow me to quote for you here:

    § 97-3-15 (3) “A person who uses defensive force shall be presumed to have reasonably feared imminent death or great bodily harm, or the commission of a felony upon him or another or upon his dwelling, or against a vehicle which he was occupying, or against his business or place of employment or the immediate premises of such business or place of employment, if the person against whom the defensive force was used, was in the process of unlawfully and forcibly entering, or had unlawfully and forcibly entered, a dwelling, occupied vehicle, business, place of employment or the immediate premises thereof or if that person had unlawfully removed or was attempting to unlawfully remove another against the other person’s will from that dwelling, occupied vehicle, business, place of employment or the immediate premises thereof and the person who used defensive force knew or had reason to believe that the forcible entry or unlawful and forcible act was occurring or had occurred. This presumption shall not apply if the person against whom defensive force was used has a right to be in or is a lawful resident or owner of the dwelling, vehicle, business, place of employment or the immediate premises thereof or is the lawful resident or owner of the dwelling, vehicle, business, place of employment or the immediate premises thereof or if the person who uses defensive force is engaged in unlawful activity or if the person is a law enforcement officer engaged in the performance of his official duties; ”

    The business was closed. It was outside normal business hours. The perps entered by removing a vent hood and dropping through a hole in the roof – they didn’t saunter in through a door. This is a done deal and a righteous shoot, entirely within the confines of the law.

  13. I love everything about this story.

    I have numerous instances just like it from acquaintances. I knew a small business owner that spent the night in his shop awaiting burglars he was sure would arrive and sure enough they did. When they least expected it, he surprised them gun in hand pointed right at them. They did exactly what he asked of them and the cops came to collect them.

    Uh . . . setting a trap for burglars who steal beverages? Maybe that’s something the cops should do?

    ?? Cops aren’t going to do that.

  14. Dude protected his property, doesn’t seem like a shoot first ask questions later scenario. Nothing to see here, move along.

  15. We’re talking Mississippi, here.

    No charges.

    Now if it were California or Portland, Oregon, well, he’s fvcked…

    • It depends on WHERE in Ole Miss, AND the color of the victim and shooter’s skin.

      In Jackson white shooting black means immediate and aggressive prosecution or the white person, regardless of the law. Black on Black, not so much….. With the Jackson prosecutor there is no such thing as whites defending themselves, and slaps on the wrist for anyone black despite what they may do or to whom. Some animals are more equal than others.

  16. So, while the result is satisfactory, I reckon the process disqualifies Mr. Cole from kudos. You?

    I don’t think so. In my state he could have shot him with or without knowing he has a gun if the guy broke into his home. Happens all the time. Depends on your state though. If this was in California he probably would have been arrested by the cops for trying to protect his shop. The police would have dusted off the victimized minorities of institutionalized discrimination and social and class injustice (the burglars), released them and perhaps given them a ride home, and the shop owner would go to jail on many charges including those involving a deadly weapon.

  17. my work provides us with allsport sugar free freezer pops. unlike the drink, which is fairly terrible, the frozen confections (the red ones) are pretty darn good at the end of a hot day.
    so kudos indeed.

  18. Disqualified, nothing. They broke into his place. The little crap-nuggets are lucky he was a poor shot. Property preserved, life protected, punks off the streets…to quote Henry II from The Lion In Winter, “to these aged eyes, boy, that’s what winning looks like.”

  19. Maybe Farago is off his meds today or something. He should know better than to characterize this as a “trap.” It’s no more a trap than me defending my home in a similar manner if someone breaks in.

    If indeed the fidgety perp represented an immediate, credible threat to Mr. Cole’s life, then no laws were broken and said perp should count his lucky stars he’s still alive.

  20. Stakeout? Does a man need to explain why he is protecting himself and his property?

    Exempt from kudos? So we support TRTKABA but acknowledge using this right immediately leads to an impossibly narrow legal arena unless rehearsed like a ballet. Hell just turn in your guns at the next round up.

    My life is a hockey match.

  21. What did he do wrong ?

    His store. He was there to protect it.

    They enter without him asking them in….he was gonna hold them…one moved which he took as a threat and got pinked.

    It’s what these turds should expect. Better than they should expect. Nothing to see here ….move along.

  22. You’re in my home/business uninvited. I confront you. You make furtive movements. You get shot.

    Even in CA that looks like a clean shoot.

  23. You’re not doing much to change the perception that you are a bleeding heart liberal, Mr. Farago.

    HOW IS THIS A TRAP? The store had been burgled before, so the storeowner decided to defend his property. He didn’t trick anyone into breaking in to his store. He didn’t leave the door open. He didn’t set a “trap”, which would have been a device triggered by the burglars—he waited for them to break in.

    He did everything right. What’s wrong with you?

  24. Why does the location matter???
    If my home was broken into with the same frequency as this mans store, and I decided to stay home and shot the invaders, did I do something wrong???

  25. oy veh Farago ya statist, and you just disqualified yourself with this:

    “Uh . . . setting a trap for burglars who steal beverages? Maybe that’s something the cops should do? Or perhaps Mr. Cole should have erected barriers to entry. Or installed an alarm.”

    just what makes you think your hierarchic inferiors, aka govt terrorist SERVANTS, are ‘allowed’ to do something you can’t or aren’t ‘allowed’ to do: after all, howTF would you delegate explicitly enumerated powers to them, if you the delegator yourself didn’t reserve the powers to do something to begin with?


    sounds like someone went to Wilsonian Progressive School of Jurisprudence.


  26. Next post — how the Korean shop owners set a trap to protect their businesses during the LA Riots.

    Set a trap? Really?

  27. Hey I’ve been busy today-exactly my sentiments Ralph! Only I was going to use Ferguson Misery…er Missouri.

  28. If he had a lawyer speak to the police and media for him, the story would have probably read that he was working late that night, the criminals unexpectedly broke in, and he had to fight for his life shooting the bad guy in the ear in the struggle. But of course, the article would have been buried in the back page of a local newspaper., and we would not be commenting on it here.

  29. Not being there to witness exactly what went down, the shop owner made a couple of mistakes. One of which was talking too much. That said, I personally think he did pretty good.

    If law enforcement won’t protect you and your stuff, who will?

    DGU of the day? Your site, your call.

  30. In 1988, Donn Dibiasio, the owner of D-B Guns on North Main Street in Providence, RI, shot and killed a young man who crashed his car into the storefront in the nighttime and came at him with a pipe. Donn shot and killed him with his .45. The police accused Donn of lying in wait, arrested him and brought him before the 6th Division District Court. A grand jury failed to return an indictment. I knew Donn and his wife personally. He was a true gun rights patriot.

  31. Knowing they were getting in by the roof it might have been a lot smarter to fix the roof. And cheaper- I mean, he’s going to secure the roof anyway, right? Well now he’s wasted a bullet and may incur life-changing debts from a lawyer if he is sued (there are plenty of lawyers willing to take a chance on contingency to sue someone who does this but none that will work on that basis for the defense in a civil action)

  32. so whats the problem; couple din do nuffin B&E a store and one gets shot, at least he didn’t cap them on the way down, poor boys accidentally put a hole in a roof and dropped in for some Twinkies, except they didn’t pay!
    when I was a kid lots of people had loaded rock salt in place of BB’s not pleasant at all. and weren’t afraid to use it

  33. Not a trap. I don’t see any difference between this and hiring a security guard.

    A trap would have been something like electrifying the expected point of entry so that they would have been electrocuted upon attempting entry.

  34. I see no problem with the situation here. The guy that got capped should have stayed still like he was told to do, whether he actually had a gun or not. I’m not going to wait and see what he’s reaching for.

  35. He should have pulled a bunch of files out of the file cabinet, spread them on his desk and tell the cops he was working late on his files.
    He never should have spoken to the Perps farther than, Stop, I have a gun, you are trespassing/robbing/burglarizing my place of business, get on the floor, don’t move and then call the cops.
    If he felt threatened and it looked like the perp had a gun which he was going for he should have shot to kill.
    He then should have retreated to cover and held the survivors at gun point.
    Never tell a crook you have been waiting a long time for him/her that is premeditated and with a gun might be construed as a planned murder.
    A Business man has the right to work late at his store and if someone decides to rob him at that time he has the right to stop them and if felt endangered shoot them.

  36. As a youth I and my friends were very stupid. One night we decided to goto a local farmers field and take a few watermelons. Unknown to us the farmer was in the field waiting. Jump out of the truck, start grabbing watermelons and BOOM! BOOM! shotgun blast. Luckly it was rock salt. I spent two hours picking rock salt out of my buddys back. He only blacked out once. Needless to say we NEVER EVER did that again. Lesson learned the hard way.

  37. The owner should have set an alarm. (From what I read) he was not in fear of his life. I think the local law enforcement view this punk as he needed to learn a lesson. Thank god the perp did not die. I hope the elderly owner will conduct himself in a more lawful manner in the future. All in all, the owner is lucky he is probably one of the “Good old boys”. I have played in several arenas Shreesport, Batton Rouge and probably one other arena. It was back in 79-81. I recall .how different it was from where I was born and raised (Los Angeles, Ca).


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