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The shooting occurred on October 19, 2012, at about 2:44 am and was a classic case of castle doctrine self defense. The deceased was a violent convict with a long history of criminal behavior. He had alcohol, cocaine, and Oxycodone in his system when he was shot. Still, his relatives complained vigorously when they found out that he was shot, claiming that “they didn’t have to shoot him” . . .

On June 27, 2013, it was reported that Jack Dillon, the home owner, would not be charged. A grand jury had determined that his decision to shoot Jeffrey Carson fell well within the bounds Ohio’s castle doctrine. It took over nine months for the investigation to work its way through the system. Now, more than eight months after the grand jury’s decision, a court has finally ordered that Mr. Dillon’s pistol be returned to him.

Prosecutors didn’t oppose the return of the gun, which Dillon used to shoot 29-year-old Jeffrey Carson on Oct. 19, 2012, said Dillon’s attorney, Paul St. Marie.

So why did it take eight months after the grand jury’s ‘no bill’ to return Dillon’s property – property he had used to lawfully defend himself? Dillon had dealt with threats since the shooting. He’d been confronted by Carson’s relatives the next morning.

As the yelling continued, Jessica Dillon, who lives next door, called the police at 9:37 a.m. to report that the burglary suspect’s family members were outside 112 Water St. causing trouble, according to an Elyria police log. 

The couple yelled at Carson’s family to get off their property. Carson’s family members slowly backed away yelling that the Dillons didn’t have to kill their brother. 

Minutes later police showed up and de-escalated the situation and sent everyone on their way.

If the prosecutors had no problem with returning the Dillon’s property, why didn’t they do it eight months earlier? It smells suspiciously of attempted legalized theft of firearms, an all too common practice. If you have to go to the trouble of having a court order the return of your firearms, it will almost certainly cost more than the firearms are worth. Many people never bother.

Some states are addressing the problem with legislation. Kansas bill HB 2473 requires that if the owner of a firearm is acquitted of charges or if the charges are dropped, the firearm must be returned in 30 days. Something that shouldn’t require a law to accomplish.

©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
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    • George did not, but considering how much money and free guns he was given, he basically traded a used kel tec pf 9 for an AR, a Glock, and a KSG. I’d say he got the good end of the deal.

      • except for having his name slandered for the rest of his life and being the most hated man in liberal america incurring massive legal costs having his civil rights violated because the state prefered the mob rule to a grand jury and likely never have the ability for a private life again other that that mr Zimmerman got a good deal.

        • Not slandered as far as I’m concerned. If I ever met George I’ll buy him a beverage of his choice and a box of ammo.

          Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    • Last I heard, the Sanford po-po put a hold on the return pending the outcome of the Federal investigation, which has taken longer than the Capone investigation.

      Expect the investigation to end when the Democrat stranglehold on the Executive Branch ends. Not before.

  1. Self-defense tip: Buy two of the same gun.

    No need to familiarize yourself on a new platform while the other languishes in gun purgatory.

        • Until it’s taken away after a DGU, then he may shoot it well, but that’s no use if he doesn’t have it in his possession.

        • I said beware of a man with only one gun, not beware of a man with no gun. If he still has his one gun then he obviously hasn’t shot anybody with it yet, which means you should beware of him. Once your dead does it really matter (to you) if they take his gun?

        • Be even more cautious around the man with two identical guns. The one he carries won’t be as worn out, but he’ll have had a lot of practice with it, or its twin. In the line of defensive pistols I’d much rather have two ordinary identical pistols than one fancier model. The issue is presentation speed and handling skill under pressure.

        • If you can only afford one gun save your money (again) and another. To me it does not matter: Hi-Point, Glock, etc. They all work. (I would trust some more than others.) One Hi-Point is better than no gun and two Hi-Points are better when you use one to defend yourself. That way you still have a gun after the first one becomes evidence (even in the short term).

        • What everyone seems to be missing here is that if you’re charged in a homicide they are going to get a search warrant for your home and confiscate ALL your guns and if you’re exonerated you’ll be stuck trying to get your backup gun as well.

        • Keep the second gun at another location (if possible). A relative or friends house would be good.

        • Still have my Ruger P89 and I doubt I will ever part with it. Shoots so smooth I hardly feel the slide moving! Luv that thang!

      • You’re a fan of the Pardner Pump aren’t you Ralph?

        Pretty cheap if you ask me, I’d be willing to give up SOMETHING to make sure I had something to defend myself and my family.

        • I am very happy with the quality of the pardner pump. Garbage finish aside its a tank.

        • You’re a fan of the Pardner Pump aren’t you Ralph?

          Yup. It’s my wall leaner. Tube full, chamber empty and open, safety off. It will do the business.

      • Nobody can’t afford two used Glocks unless they’re already working for prison wages, in which case they should hold off buying the second one for, oh, 5 to 10 with time off for good behavior.

      • Yes. I’ve thought about getting a Walther PPS or Springfield XDS for concealed carry, but I’d rather not be out the bucks in the event I have to use it.

        I’m tempted to save some money and get something like a Keltec PF9 but I hate the trigger. I figure to go with a S&W Shield or Beretta Nano. I can shoot them well and I won’t be too upset if it gets lost in the maw of the legal justice system should I have a DGU.

        • Are you seriously going to buy a cheap EDC gun in the fear of it being taken away? Before that happens, there’s a little event called the DGU. If you have to worry, worry about that first.

        • If I’m at the point that I have to defend myself with lethal force, most assuredly a rare occasion for most, I’m completely unconcerned with the value of the pistol that might be forfeit. The same applies for planning for such an event. I buy guns that suit my needs and are within my budget. If I have to forfeit one due to having killed someone with it I’m hardly going to regret the money spent.

        • I’m of the thought that a gun is a disposable tool when used to save your life or the lives of your family. Buy the best quality tool you can with that in mind. A dead man can’t buy another gun no matter the price.

      • A decent , reliable carry gun can be had for under 400, even less for a revolver. Having two is a good idea, just keep the second one in a completely different location.

        If you can only afford one gun, how will you afford a lawyer if the worst happens?

  2. Hopefully the gun was in reasonable working order after being returned. There is no law that says the gums need to be properly stored or cared for. It’d be a shame if it was rusty and pitted. The next, and longer fight, might be for a replacement but the lawer fees migt be much more than the cost of a new gun.

    • Rule #37. Unless you have big bucks Never, Never shoot anyone with a high end 1911. That’s what GLOCKS were made for.

      • Exactly why I bought a Glock. I care too much about my 1911, I could leave my glock in the mud for a week and be alright with it.

  3. A good article.

    Note for the newcomers to firearms and self defense. Have a backup gun located somewhere safe . And don’t carry a defensive pistol you’ll mind parting with. I don’t mean to say that your carry gun should be a soulless appliance, but don’t plan on getting your gun back fast if the Five-Oh show up.

    If you live in a Blue State where the governor talks about “saving kids with background checks”, don’t plan on seeing your gun again -ever.

    As the example of Katrina demonstrates, you dont have to end up in a DGU to lose your carry gun to the cops.

    • Yep, always keep a reliable gun stashed with accessories in case of just such an event. And don’t carry your BBQ gun as edc cause you will lose it during the investigation. That’s why Glocks rock. Who cares if it gets taken.

    • Use a reliable, uber trusted stock pistol, that did not set you back big bucks. DGU or SD with a $2000 Custom Kimber might be all well and good, but a Taurus, Kel-Tec, or 2nd hand Glock (you get the idea), won’t end up “lost” in police custody like a Custom Kimber twould. How many firearms were returned after being confiscated post Katrina?
      (Crickets) again….

    • I highly recommend the Walther P22 as your backup. I understand you can find them for free on some websites.

    • There was a time the local PD kept one of my 1911’s for three months in case the perp didn’t plead. The ammo was gone when I got it back. The duty property officer politely tried to talk me into selling him the gun. And who could blame him? I like the local PD. Lots of PD’s would simply have ‘lost’ the pistol.

  4. Well, of course the man didn’t have to shoot him. Everyone knows that if a man comes at you intent on doing you harm, all you need to do is politely ask him not to. Anything more than that is obviously just a desire for violence on the part of the shooter.
    /end sarcasm

  5. Took about 14 months for Nazir Al-Mujaahid to get his gun back from the Milwaukee Po-Po led by anti-gun authoritarian wannabe Ed Flynn. DGU occurred January 2012, no charge decision in February 2012, finally got his gun back after court order in April 2013. Convince me to buy a few more pistols just in case.

    • Happened about 2 miles from my house. I guess robbing a store with a sawed off shotgun really isn’t a federal crime when you are “connected”.

  6. Wow, I read the articles that were linked and this guy was pretty lucky he got some good people on the grand jury. Their TV was stolen the night before so they left a window unlocked and were lying in wait for the burglar to return the next night.

    • I think you need to read the article again. It doesn’t say anything like that.

      Lying in wait?

      “The home’s residents, Jack and Linda Dillon, were awakened by Carson, who was in their living room”

      And there’s nothing there about them leaving the window unlocked. But even if they did…so what?

  7. “They didn’t have to shoot him, He was a good person. He was a family man. He made some mistakes but he was turning his life around. Blah blah blah.”

    Actually, he was a POS, a junkie, a mother-beater and a career criminal with a violent past. He got what he deserved. And if his family cared for him that much, there are plenty more around who are just like him. Pick one and take him home. Hell, pick two.

    • Definitely not a Hi-Power. Safety looks like a Makarov but the hammer is wrong – Maks typically have round hammers.


    • I’m guessing FEG P9R, the “Hi Power copy” that’s actually a S&W 39/59 inside. Slide mounted safety and trigger guard gives it away.

  8. “Minutes later police showed up and de-escalated the situation and sent everyone on their way.” That’s something new. I think the real story was missed here.

  9. Love the Pardner Pump. Can be had for $180-200 locally at any given time. With a warranty. Just the sound of racking will scare the s–t out of your average punk. See the TTAG review.

  10. requires that if the owner of a firearm is acquitted of charges or if the charges are dropped, the firearm must be returned in 30 days.

    If the owner is acquitted and/or charges are dropped there is no crime, certainly not one they are guilty of, and therefore there is absolutely no reason that their firearm shoyld not be returned to them on their way out of the courtroom. Anything else is an unreasonable seizure of private property.

    • Agreed. Imagine the ruckus if cars weren’t returned for 30 days. I wonder if there are storage fees associated with them “holding” the gun.

  11. This is the time people need to start suing individual officers and departments and not settle in abusive of power cases like this. If cities get overloaded with paying out settlements, it gets pretty hard to buy liability insurance.

  12. The families of people that get shot while breaking into someone’s home or committing some other violent offense or for shooting at police drive me up the wall. All too often I see candlelight vigils and protests and outraged interviews when their loved ones were the one in the wrong and pretty much deserved what they got

    • For real. Maybe whenever there is a vigil for known thug, the police ought to pay a visit and check for warrants…probably clean the streets up a lot faster that way.

  13. Since the police are going to confiscate guns for a year after a lawful DGU, Jack Dillon needs more guns…apparently one for each family member


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