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Times have changed, with politics playing an ever-greater role in our lives. And in today’s world, some prosecutors seem more inclined to pursue charges in self-defense shootings. This goes double where violent aggressors lack a firearm, no matter the other factors.

Skip Gochenour talked of this at length in his seminar at the Rangemaster Tactical Training Conference this spring. Gochenour knows his subject. He has consulted in hundreds of criminal and civil cases in the United States involving guns and self-defense.

In a nutshell, he told us to expect today’s prosecutors to pursue charges more often in self-defense cases. What’s more, he warned that prosecutors will almost always take a case involving an “unarmed” attacker to a jury. Think the George Zimmerman case. Potentially with you in the role of Mr. Zimmerman.

At the same time, prosecutors can use these cases to shamelessly pander to their constituency. “Ladies and gentleman, I tried to put that trigger-happy, gun-toting NRA member in prison where he belonged, but the jury acquitted him.” And please vote for me.

While these face-saving prosecutions might not happen in a lot of parts of Texas, most of us don’t live in the Lone Star State. The fact of the matter is that a righteous shoot that wouldn’t earn a second glance in Midland, Texas will almost always go to a jury in Cook County, Illinois.

Even outside of Cook County, local prosecutors can sometimes pursue dubious prosecutions of good guys.

Knox County, IL

Located on the western edge of Illinois, Knox County hosts Carl Sandburg’s hometown of Galesburg. Knox County also has a Democrat State’s Attorney prosecuting a self-defense shooting of an “unarmed” aggressor.

In fact, a grand jury in Knox County rejected murder charges against the defendant. So the Assistant State’s Attorney refiled the murder charges himself. The Galesburg Register-Mail has the story of the very unusual move.

GALESBURG — In a rare move, the Knox County State’s Attorney’s office has again filed a first-degree murder charge against James Love in the June 19 shooting death of Xavier Hartman.

According to Knox County court files, prosecutors filed the same charges as they initially sought in a new case Wednesday, July 18. The charges are: first-degree murder with a mandatory firearm enhancement; Class X felony aggravated battery with a firearm; and felony aggravated discharge of a firearm.

The farmer, James Love, has no criminal history and a good reputation in the community.

On the other hand, the dead teen’s adult arrest history began with a felony mob-action arrest in neighboring Henry County in 2017. Xavier Hartman pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor mob-action charge and spent some time in county jail. He also faced an emergency order of protection filed against him in Henry County on February 6, 2018.

So what happened on that fateful night that led to the death of young Mr. Hartman?

WQAL has the best reporting on the public details.

A 19-year-old Galva teen was shot and killed by a rural Galva man after a one-car traffic accident and altercation that happened in the early morning hours of Tuesday, June 19.

A single-car accident “in the early morning hours?” Running that through the universal translator: Someone crashed while impaired or badly distracted.

Details on what exactly transpired around 12:30 a.m. in the 2900 block of Knox Road 2000E remain sketchy.

Sketchy details? Well, given that the 19-year-old teen has assumed room temperature (and his buddy fled early in the “confrontation”), there’s only one version of this story out there.  Unlike the deceased teen, the farmer isn’t a sketchy individual.

Frankly, the big question everyone should ask: Does the physical evidence support Mr. Love’s version of what happened?

…but Knox County Sheriff’s deputies report that Xavier Hartman, 19, of Galva was shot in the leg by James E. Love, 58, outside of Love’s home after a vehicle Hartman was driving crashed about 300 yards from Love’s home.

According to a Knox County Sheriff’s Department media release, Love heard the crash and yelling…

Yelling like, “Help, I’m hurt?” Or yelling like, “You effing idiot! I can’t believe you crashed your drunk ass in the ditch!”

…and left his home armed with a 9mm semiautomatic Ruger handgun to investigate.

Seems prudent. I don’t go to the bathroom without mine.

So the farmer, eligible and then some for membership in the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), checked on a car crash just down the road from his house. Ever the good Samaritan, he undoubtedly took his phone and a flashlight. And ever the prudent gun owner, he also tucked his Ruger 9mm pistol into his belt.

The report says “a confrontation occurred between Hartman and Love” and Love fired two rounds from his gun, striking Hartman in the thigh. The report says a passenger in Hartman’s vehicle “fled the area on foot” as the confrontation began.

So, when the farmer showed up and asked if he can help, it turned into a confrontation? And the passenger fled the area on foot early on? What was he hiding — or taking with him? Was he an intoxicated driver? Did he have drugs? Stolen property? Was it a stolen car? Or maybe he was afraid of police officers arriving with criminal warrants for his arrest?

Clearly, the second person didn’t want to hang around and wait for law enforcement. That doesn’t sound like behavior consistent with a law-abiding person.

Furthermore, he ran away “as the confrontation began.” It sounds like the gun wasn’t the reason for fleeing the accident scene.

Love was arrested and faces felony charges of unlawful discharge of a firearm and aggravated battery with a firearm. In a subsequent interview with the Peoria Journal-Star, Knox County Sheriff Dave Clague said Love could face second-degree murder charges and those charges could be filed ahead of Love’s scheduled video court hearing on Wednesday. Clague also said it appears Hartman was unarmed when he was shot and that it is believed the two men did not know each other.

Prior to being arrested, Love was transported to an area hospital for treatment of a laceration he received during the confrontation, according to the release.

And speaking of bad behavior, why did Mr. Hartman attack a Good Samaritan? Not only that, but Hartman beat Mr. Love badly enough that the farmer required hospital treatment. Decent, rational people don’t attack Good Samaritans, sending them to the hospital.

But as the Knox County SA’s office sees it, Hartman didn’t have a gun. They ignore his youth, his strength and aggressiveness, to say nothing of his willingness to initiate a vicious and violent attack using lethal force on a senior-citizen Good Samaritan prior to getting shot.

Obviously the State’s Attorney’s office thinks prosecuting this case makes for good politics. Despite the self-defense nature of the shooting.

Use wisdom and prudence

While anyone can pull a trigger, it takes a wise and prudent man to survive the legal aftermath.

Yes, getting good gun training, and maybe some martial arts or Krav Maga might help you avoid confrontations or violent situations on the street, or win them if the worst happens. However, self-defense classes and self-defense techniques will only take you so far. Do you know and understand The Castle Doctrine? What is a justifiable homicide under your state laws? Will a district attorney be able to file criminal charges because of your use of force or would your case be protected under Stand Your Ground laws? Gun laws (and gun rights) vary wildly and and the use of deadly force in your own home may prevent violent crime but lead to a world of problems when the police arrive. Wise and prudent people will prepare for the real world aftermath in court if required to use deadly force.

This case shows how a prosecutor may take an apparently righteous shoot to a jury, especially where the bad guy doesn’t have a gun. That costs a lot of money in legal bills.

Cases like this also show the wisdom and prudence of obtaining some form of concealed carry insurance. Hiring competent legal counsel, securing expert witnesses and mounting an effective legal defense can quickly bankrupt an average person. Additionally, the worry about incurring staggering legal bills may cause hesitation at the wrong time in a confrontation.

Smart people protect themselves. Buy yourself peace of mind. No matter if you go with the Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network, the US Law Shield or the pricier US Concealed Carry coverage, or another provider, get some insurance.

What’s the alternative to spending a few bucks on insurance? Spending yourself into bankruptcy and then possibly going to prison just so an ambitious prosecutor can score political points with the low-information voter class.

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  1. 911? Yeah, i just heard a car crash and drunken yelling at xx. Can you have somebody check it out? I’m going back to bed.

    For all you cop haters. This is why they exist. Use them.

    • Exactly. Especially when it comes to domestics. You never want to be caught in one of those. Call it in and let the police deal with that mess.

    • On the flip side, if it was you or a loved one who had been in the accident and needed medical attention? How long before the police arrive? How long before medical help arrives after the police arrive?

      This prosecutor is doing everyone a huge disservice by discouraging good samaritans from getting involved. Lives may very well be lost because someone decided they wanted to score political points. A sad state of affairs.

      • This is why prosecutors that don’t get a grand jury indictment and press for homicide charge in self-defense cases should be stood up against a wall and shot when their victim is found not guilty.

        • Considering that the grand jury only hears the prosecutor and no one else, the fact they did not hand down an indictment speak volume.

        • @ Your Mom, a grand jury is there to hear the prosecutor’s c ase and decide if there’s a reasonable likelihood of getting a conviction. If they deem that he doesn’t have a c ase strong enough to be worth prosecuting he’s just wasting taxpayer money (along with the defendant’s). But if he’s allowed to pursue it without any personal repercussions if he fails to get a conviction, then this sort of thing will happen.

        • …or at least liable for malicious prosecution if the don’t get a conviction. Somehow, when you’re acting on your own, outside-ish the rest of the process, I feel like “qualified immunity” becomes more “qualified” and less “immunity.”

      • ‘Lives may very well be lost because someone decided they wanted to score political points.’

        This has been going on at from least the beginning of recorded history.

      • The “flip side” for my loved ones would not involve drunken yelling. Sorry about yours.

    • I have a 5-acre ranch located in an extremely rural area. Average response times for law enforcement is 40 minutes. The closest volunteer fire department is about 30 minutes. If we do not respond to incidents near our homes, people will die. If we merely call 911, it will take an hour before victims can be delivered to a hospital.

      If prosecutors put politics above what is right, people will ignore people in need. In the rural areas, strangers will suffer the most, for locals will only help family and friends. Rural areas will likely become no-go zones for city dwellers. Oh, I know, liberals will make laws forcing people to help, but really, if a person keeps their story straight, it is unenforceable.

      • “Rural areas will likely become no-go zones for city dwellers”

        I’m not seeing a problem here.

      • I get your concern about people not making it but at some point that’s not your problem. If you make it your concern be prepared for the counter swing of lawyers and prosecutors. Rendering aid that results in more injuries for example will cost you your house. If a drugged or drunk man crashes into a tree on your property are you going to confront him? Only if he tries the doorknob.

  2. ‘In fact, a grand jury in Knox County rejected murder charges against the defendant. So the Assistant State’s Attorney refiled the murder charges himself.’

    The judge needs to give the prosecutor about 15 seconds to explain himself before throwing the c ase out.

    • Can you imagine what the State’s Attorney would have said if a LEO had shot him?

      Hartman, who had a prior record of violence, had significant levels of mind altering substances in his system when he collided with a fixed object and brutally attacked Deputy Dooright at the scene of the crash…

      • You apparently don’t know about the prosecutor officers in and around Chicago.

        Although it depends heavily on the race of the misunderstood youth.

  3. So the conclusion of this article was really just a sales pitch for carry insurance.

    Pay a premium for the corporation to find a way to wriggle out of protecting you. No thanks.

    • “Pay a premium for the corporation to find a way to wriggle out of protecting you. No thanks.”

      Might want to look at some of the examples. Some pay directly, and you spend nothing but premiums. Some reimburse. Some reimburse after acquittal. Some pay up to a limit, regardless of trial outcome. Gotta read the fine print. Nothing forces a person to buy insurance they don’t trust. Of course, the optimum course is to do nothing, and bet on statistics alone. The likelihood of involvement in a DGU is statistically negligible. If your number comes up, and you have only your paycheck, investments and home for collateral to a defense attorney, well, win some, lose some, some get rained out. And you will have saved a lot of money, to boot. Of course, all this is predicated on surviving a night in the tank with Mongo.

      • USCCA pays up front, use of any weapon and even carry in no carry zones. Covers members of household at home, but need their own coverage in public. Best one out there. One member was even arrested for pepper spray; completely covered and exonerated. Best one in my book.

    • Except for the ones that claim to be a reimbursement type like the NRA product, they are well worth the money. This slime ball prosecutor likely figures this poor farmer doesn’t have the money to fight in court, and will try to pressure him into pleading to a lesser charge.

      • Let us hope he doesn’t decide that putting a bullet in the state’s attorney (and another for the assistant state’s attorney) is cheaper.

        But if he did, and I were a juror, I’d call it self defense.

    • It was in no way meant as an advertisement.

      In today’s world, the prudent man will protect his family and his assets.

      The same could be said of homeowner’s insurance, life insurance or health insurance. Sure, you’re probably not going to need it… but if you do, it could save you from financial ruin.

      You probably aren’t going to need that fire extinguisher or smoke detector either, but the wise and prudent man has both!


      • This essay would look less like an advertisement for carry insurance if you didn’t devote the entire concluding section to this one specific point. Also, it now distracts from the merits of the essay when your conclusion is an advertisement as the reason for the whole essay. How do we know you aren’t in some form associated with a carry insurance company?

    • Yeah, these “carry insurance” companies have all sorts of reasons not to pay out. I’m glad I asked before I signed up, they won’t cover you if you work in a security related field, for example.

      • “I’m glad I asked before I signed up, they won’t cover you if you work in a security related field, for example.”

        Verifying coverage is always the right thing to do. Would none of them cover you at all, even off-duty events?

        • That’s the biggest part of the problem. I’d have to be off duty, and not coming or going to or from work.

          It’d only cover me when I’d need it the absolute least, if at all.

  4. Interesting western Illinois political demographics. It’s in an area of Illinois (far from East St. Louis) that I would have guessed to be conservative.

    Knox borders on a sanctuary county and a county which has a sanctuary ordinance pending, but apparently the Knox county officials haven’t proposed making Knox a 2A sanctuary. At least I can’t find a sanctuary map that has Knox on it.

    The State’s Attorney is a Dem, and while the county went with Trump in 2016, he was the first Republican presidential candidate to carry the county since Reagan.

    • That whole central IL region has weird politics. Most people are conservative, especially rural areas. However, there are significant blue voters due to certain middle class and lower middle class interests like unions, welfare-state benefits, and farm subsidies. So while most are socially conservative, some vote D because financial interests. It’s stupid of course but people learn slow until they’re bit.

    • As someone in the Peoria area, I can say that it is a very conservative area for being a good sized city. Even on college campuses, there is tolerance for conservative thought.

  5. By their conduct and behavior, the two featherless bipeds in the car were trash. When a righteous citizen removes a piece of human debris from society law enforcement should just slap them on the back and give them a deserved “Well done!”

    A former C.I.A. operative by the name of “Scheurer” wrote a post on his blog about what is in store for traitors like the prosecutor in this story about 10 days ago. Unfortunately, what he wrote so unsettled the powers-that-be that his blog and he himself have been “disappeared”.

  6. “the Knox County State’s Attorney’s office has again filed a first-degree murder charge against James Love in the June 19 shooting death of Xavier Hartman.”

    The one minor God-send in these types of situations is the hubris of the prosecutors (or political posturing). It would be much easier to go for a 3rd-degree murder or manslaughter charge but the man has got to shoot big
    . . . and thus increase his chances of losing. I am utterly amazed at how much attorneys believe in “the law”. Many (the not so good ones) actually believe in it. They practice in self-deception and that is their weakness.

    • I was thinking the same thing. With Zimmerman Man2 or Negligent Homicide would have been pretty easy convictions, but they shot for Murder 2 meaning the prosecutor had to demonstrate murderous intent, which obviously didn’t exist. Looks like exactly the same thing in this case, except there isn’t even a decent case for negligence this time.

  7. Yawn. Back to sleep. Maybe call the cops and let them get beat up or shot at. Not my job to help another human being. Or make a politicians carrier. It’s story’s like this one that make good people go back to bed.

  8. “And ever the prudent gun owner, he also tucked his Ruger 9mm pistol into his belt.”- Assumes facts not in evidence. Nothing in the reports say where the pistol was, it very well could have been in his hand.

    ” asked if he can help,”- Assumes facts not in evidence. We have no description of the beginning of the encounter.

    “That doesn’t sound like behavior consistent with a law-abiding person.” – Assumes facts not in evidence. It could sound like the behavior of a man running from an armed stranger in the dark.

    “It sounds like the gun wasn’t the reason for fleeing the accident scene.”- Assumes facts not in evidence. Or it might have been. We don’t know from the reported facts.

    ” why did Mr. Hartman attack a good Samaritan? ” – Again, assumes facts not in evidence. I have not found a description of the confrontation. We do not have the facts about what happened.

    Note that you did not mention this “The Grand Jurors filed indictment for charges of Reckless Homicide/Involuntary Manslaughter, Aggravated Battery, and Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm,..”
    So the Grand Jury would not go for 1st degree murder but did indict for Reckless Homicide. The DA then refiled the murder charges before a judge.

    Or the fact that the other person in the truck was located and has no mention of charges: “Another person was located who was a passenger in Hartman’s vehicle.”

    None of the news stories describe the confrontation. Were the entrance wounds on the man’s thigh and lower leg in the front or in the back? Did the man who was shot show any evidence of powder stippling or other evidence of close contact? We don’t know because there is no description of the physical evidence.

    • Yes the article made assumptions largely based on the difference in the reputations of the two individuals, but the fact that the grand jury refused to indict him is a very strong indicator that this is an unjust prosecution.

      • The Grand Jury did indict on 3 charges: Reckless homicide , Aggravated Battery, and Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm.

        According to the DA, they can’t mix “reckless” and “aggravated” charges. Since the “aggravated” implies intent.

        So now, Love is facing one set of indicted charges and a murder charge that the DA is presenting to the judge, I guess to see if he can represent to another Grand Jury.

    • I had all the same thoughts. John Boch makes a bunch of assumptions and then puts it in writing like he actually knows what happened when he actually has no clue what transpired. His articles are generally terrible and draw a lot of conclusions based on assumptions. Fake news at its “finest”.

  9. I love how this is essentially an ad for one of those carry insurance companies.

    Way to go new owners of TTAG!

    • I don’t think there is anything wrong in saying to readers “Hey, here’s some choices for insurance”

    • This is an article about how “the system” is rigged against gun owners. This is a cautionary example of “no matter how right you are, the state will find a way to punish you”. The punishment requires a lot of money to contest. Are you indicating you would rather the article advise you get self-defense insurance, but leave you in the dark about where to look? But, if advising where to look, the author should only identify sources that do not advertise* with the blog?

      *facts not in evidence: we have nothing to indicate the three companies identified pay for TTAG to feature their names.

    • It was in no way meant as an advertisement.

      In today’s world, the prudent man will protect his family and his assets.

      The same could be said of homeowner’s insurance, life insurance or health insurance. Sure, you’re probably not going to need it… but if you do, it could save you from financial ruin.

      You probably aren’t going to need that fire extinguisher or smoke detector either, but the wise and prudent man has both!


      • I am always amazed at how angry some gun owners become whenever this subject is discussed. I certainly agree that much of what is offered is smoke and mirrors and I am highly disappointed in the NRA offering. None of that means this is not a topic for discussion by gun owners, or that anyone who brings it up is a shill for the concept.

        Yes, I have such coverage for both my wife and myself. No, I am not entirely satisfied with it. I sincerely hope that either the carrier I use, or one of the other ones figures out how to plug all the loopholes without doubling the cost. I suspect they need more time and data to do so however.

        To me, it actually made sense for John to bring the subject up in this context. The legal defense is going to be very costly. If the defendant hadn’t had considerable assets he might still be sitting in jail. He is going to lose far more than the cost of the premium he might have paid.

        I hope to never need this protection; I am not entirely satisfied with it, but I am glad I have it.

        • Do you have USCCA? I do,and what they cover and how they pay and the support they provide are way ahead of all the others. Compare and see.

  10. I’m obviously behind the times or missing something. I just can’t see how any prosecutor has anything to gain politically by pursuing this case in a place like Western Illinois. I guess he’s trying to score some points with the sewage in Chicago is all I can figure.

  11. According to this article:

    … a grand jury in Knox County rejected murder charges against the defendant. So the Assistant State’s Attorney refiled the murder charges himself.

    How does this Assistant State’s Attorney proceed with a trial in violation of the United States Constitution Fifth Amendment:

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury

    Once again, we need a federal prosecutor to convict Assistant State’s Attorney for Knox County, Illinois with “Deprivation of rights under color of law.”

    • State procedures may permissibly vary from those for federal prosecutors. Not all states (California being one of them) that doesn’t employ criminal grand juries.

      • In other words we see once again that the states claim they are not subject to the U.S. Constitution’s Amendments. Got it.

        When will The People recognize that the monstrosity that is our legal system is nothing more than a giant, bloated, convoluted, and obfuscated “system” designed to enable the ruling class to exploit, use, and abuse the working class?

  12. Took an awful long time to get to this part:

    Hartman beat Mr. Love badly enough that the farmer needed hospital treatment.

    He’s by himself out in the dark, being attacked by someone much younger than him. Shooting is reasonable.

    The last self-defense killing in my area was between two unarmed men, out in front of a gas station. Some sort of altercation, one guy threw a punch, the other guy punched him back. That punch dropped the guy, his head bounced off the pavement and he died.

    An unarmed man can kill you that fast.

    It was actually ruled justified self-defense — the other guy started the fight.

    • The facts given say “laceration during the confrontation”. They do not say who was the aggressor or how the cut was received. No details are given of the shooting.

      From the charges the Grand Jury did indict on, my guess and it is only a guess, is that there was a confrontation. Mr. Hartman tried to escape. Mr. Love then shot to wound and accidently hit the Femoral Artery. That does get you Reckless Homicide with the death. Aggravated Battery with the wound to the lower leg. Aggravated Use of a Firearm for shooting at someone running away.

  13. Typical TTAG. No—if you shoot an unarmed person you won’t be prosecuted in most places.

    The reason Zimmerman was prosecuted was solely because Governor Scott is a chickenshit and caved to the threats of the black mob. The State’s Attorney originally declared it a cut-and-dried self defense case and didn’t want to prosecute. The media, Ben Crump, and the PR machine whipped blacks into a frenzy, and Scott appointed a special prosecutor—IN A LOSER OF A CASE—to shut the blacks up.

    Xavier Hartman is a black guy shot by an old white man. The prosecutor is trying to curry favor with the blacks and also stave off the threat of riots.

    If you shoot someone, you’d better hope they’re the same race you are. The guy in Clearwater is likely going to be prosecuted and tried(and found not guilty) because the media(and BEN MUSHMOUTH CRUMP) are trying their damnedest to make this shooting a thing. Never mind the shooting took place after a man was violently blindsided and shoved to the ground in a parking lot.

    The armchair QBs are looking at the footage and saying “Oh, look, the deceased was backing up. He shouldn’t have been shot…”. But this took place in a matter of seconds. Nobody was there except those two and the family in the car. It was a good shoot. If nothing else, the shooter WHO WAS ASSAULTED deserves the benefit of the doubt.

    8 years of Obama have made certain parts of the black community think they can do whatever they want without consequences.

    If they try to riot in Clearwater, they are going to find out there are plenty of rednecks with guns in Pinellas county.

  14. When I read articles like this, I always think back to my grandfather’s advice about home invasions and smile. Grandpa said more than once that any person only owning one gun is at a serious disadvantage in a home invasion situations. You need two guns: the gun you use to shoot the creep and a Saturday Night Special to put in his hand after he’s down.

    While I’m not sure that Grandpa’s perspective is still valid in this day and age, it still makes me smile and nod every time it comes to mind.

  15. Ya’ll Couldn’t Pay Me Enough To Live In Those Anti-Gun States, That Is All…

  16. “In fact, a grand jury in Knox County rejected murder charges against the defendant. So the Assistant State’s Attorney refiled the murder charges himself…”

    uh, so why bother empaneling a jury?

    The only way this makes sense is that the ASA should face PERSONAL responsibility for his prosecution. Unfortunately that won’t happen. For those who hate the qualified immunity of police, you ain’t seen nothing compared to the immunity of prosecutors and judges.

  17. Get yourself carry insurance. And get some political muscle. After you win the case, sue the prosecutor’s office for political persecution and harassment involving abuse of office.

    That’s how you make them pay. Don’t let them get away. They don’t like negative press. Don’t just settle for money, make them write public apology letters and send them to the press.
    Just like rapists, if you let them get away after you survive their attacks, they will go after another victim, with more aggression and threats.

    • I pay $13/mo for the total insurance package that USCCA provides to members Plus, I get 8 issues of their great magazine. However, it went up to $22/mo this year for new members

      While I don’t know what the other companies offer in protection for the price you have to pay, I do know that USCCA has a proven track record in protecting people like James Love:

  18. I think I would have watched from my window and called EMS/cops to get that shit off of my lawn. Especially at 12:30 at night.

    The problem he is going to have is he stuck his nose into the accident, even if it’s on his property. He should have called authorities FIRST. Now those authorities are not on his side at all.

    Is he guilty? Probably not but he’s going to spend a fortune before that’s decided by 12 others.

  19. This case exemplifies why elections matter. State’s attorneys in IL are appointed, and that means they’re Democrats. And an IL Democrat better be anti-gun or he won’t make precinct captain. State and municipal elections aren’t as exciting as national ones, but the local officials have way more impact on our lives than the President or even a Senator or Rep does.

    The guy who defended himself last week in Clearwater FL wasn’t charged. That’s because the State’s Attorney there is an elected Republican. As law-abiding gun owners, we need to focus on getting people who give full-throated support to gun rights into state and municipal offices. And the NRA has devote less money to the marquee elections and more to local candidates.

  20. Spreading peanut butter consequences doesn’t do anyone any good. The laws in every state are different than those in other states. Consequences in the described scenario in IL, are not going to happen in MS, for example. Know your own State.

  21. I certainly wish we had more factual information. I, and others, are trying to figure out if it makes sense to get involved and help.

    The only idea that occurs to me for the State’s Attorney’s actions is that Galesburg is heavily black (only 84% white) and has been activist since the early 1960s. Black activists were able to get the principal of the high school fired on charges of racism back then.

    Galva, by contrast, has only a 0.25% black population, and is actually in another county (Henry) where it is far more likely he would never been charged with anything if the scenarios being presented are accurate.

    The 19 year olds mother actually got an Order of Protection against him earlier this year, and yet she is now singing his praises. She is white.

    • Here is an interesting add-on: Knox County Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Kerr was a primary candidate for State’s Attorney in Henry County on the Republican ticket and lost. He previously had been an assistant states attorney in Henry County and left under interesting circumstances that have never been disclosed. There were allegations that he had deliberately destroyed material prior to leaving.

      Maybe he just hates people from Henry County even though he used to live there.

  22. It depends where you live. In my part of the country (eastern Nebraska), there is about one self defense shooting per year. In the forty years I’ve been paying attention, only three have gone against the shooter. In each one, the shooter went looking for trouble that he had to shoot his way out of. In several cases, businessman have not been prosecuted after pursuing and shooting robbers after they left the premises. If anyone has been sued by the criminal or his family, it hasn’t made the news.

    That said, I agree that anyone who carries outside his home would be wise to research insurance to pay his legal bills after a self defense shooting. The three most important considerations are that
    (1) they pay up front rather than after acquittal;
    (2) they cover self defense using any method, not just firearms; and
    (3) they cover civil suits as well as criminal trials.

    • “(3) they cover civil suits as well as criminal trials.”

      More important than one might think, if living in a state that bars civil suits after acquittal at criminal trial.

      Rummaging around the internet, stumbled upon a conversation about those states with laws barring subsequent civil trials. Seems there is a “catch” in some laws. The conversation pointed out that in a number of states, there is an action that must be taken by the D.A. (or equivalent) after losing a case at trial. That action is some variety of a declaration that the D.A. considers the case fully “closed”, and there is no decision pending that might re-open the case under a different theory of the case (ex: original charge was attempted murder, but resulted in acquittal; subsequently, the D.A. decides to bring negligence, or menacing, or something else [which in fact does amount to double jeopardy). The conclusion drawn was a caution in presuming an acquittal at criminal trial automatically establishes immunity from civil trial.

  23. The practice of persecuting ALL non badgemonkey shooters by most DA’s is NOT a new phenomenon. It has been standard practice for decades…..remember Bernie Goetz…the ‘subway shooter’. While he was acquitted of the majority of the charges the morons on the jury DID find him guilty of illegal gun possession.
    So this is NOT a new issue. And whether or not you are charged in a shooting….ANY shooting….is dependent FAR MORE on the political agenda and personal beliefs of the DA, the Police Chief/Sheriff and the local city/county commission than on the actual facts of the incident. The best advice is to obtain and maintain adequate insurance to protect yourself in the event you are forced to defend yourself TWICE. Once against a criminal predator and the second time against said predators enabler….THE DA.

  24. I am sorry for what happened to you I would like to help so I will stay in my house and call 911 hope you don’t die before help arrives! That is the safest action.

  25. Lol “beat him badly enough that he required hospital treatment.”
    It says lacerations. Get your shit together. I’m tired of the articles charged so strongly with shit evidence to support. Asinine.

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