Philadelphia gas station shooting
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By Lee Williams

The anti-gun activists at The Trace – the propaganda arm of former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg’s vast anti-gun empire – have created a new bogeyman in their ongoing war against our gun rights: Killer Gas Stations.

In a story published Monday titled “Gas Stations Become a Magnet for Violence in Philadelphia,” the author would have you hold your breath, suspend all disbelief and actually accept that mom-and-pop gas stations somehow play a role in the escalating gang violence sweeping the city, even though the author’s own data does not support such a claim.

According to the story, there were nine killings at Philadelphia gas stations during all of 2021 and 2022 – nine homicides in nearly two years. However, citywide over the same time period there were 1,021 murders – 562 during 2021 and 459 in 2022. To be clear, gas station murders made up less than one-percent of Philadelphia’s total homicides.

And who would a young anti-gun activist turn to in order to buttress his false claim that service stations are somehow culpable for murder? How about a local attorney who has filed lawsuits against nine gas stations because people were shot in their parking lots.

“I don’t think the public is aware of this because they may think of shootings usually happening at bars or nightclubs, certainly not at gas stations,” said attorney David P. Thiruselvam, who has filed nine lawsuits against gas stations. “But it’s becoming an epidemic, and the gas station industry is aware of it because it’s in the news all the time. But they are not doing anything about it.”

Not only is the gas station industry not doing anything about this “epidemic,” the City of Philadelphia didn’t leap into action either.

“While Philadelphia has no laws that address gas station safety, other communities have recently approved ordinances in response to violence there. Stations can no longer stay open 24 hours in Oak Park, a close-in suburb of Chicago bisected by the busy Eisenhower Expressway, while stations in DeKalb County, outside of Atlanta, must have working security cameras at all times,” the author wrote.

In yet another letdown for the author, a spokesman for the Philadelphia City Council told him that the city has already spent a record amount of taxpayer dollars on anti-violence initiatives, adding: “none is aimed specifically at bolstering gas station security.”


The Trace describes itself as the “only newsroom dedicated to reporting on gun violence.” It has slick digital packages that are chockfull of stories, photos and videos, so it’s easy to confuse them with an actual news website. But a news website it is not. Bloomberg founded The Trace in 2015 to create anti-gun agitprop for his other anti-gun groups, which include Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, which the billionaire former mayor also bankrolls.

While The Trace has always been a tad nutty, their killer gas station theory dials the nuttiness up to eleven. Nine gas-station killings over two years – in a city that saw more than 1,000 murders over the same time period – isn’t a trend. It’s a statistical blip at best, a non-story, pure propaganda.

Besides, Philadelphia offers its visitors and residents a plethora of other venues where they can get shot, stabbed or robbed – not just gas stations. The city is a violent cesspool, which is overrun by hundreds of drug crews, all competing for dollars, product and street corners.

Larry Krasner
“Harrumph…I agree with The Trace, of course…gas stations really are to blame for Philly’s out-of-control violent crime rate.”(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

According to a recent report from the Heritage Foundation, titled “The Blue City Murder Problem,” Philadelphia has the eighth highest homicide rate in the country. The study found that it was liberal policies retraining prosecutors from holding criminals accountable – not gas stations – that made Philadelphia one of the most dangerous cities in America.

While it is somewhat refreshing that The Trace is no longer blaming firearms or another inanimate object for the increasing murder rates in cities that historically have been run by Democrats, they’re still skirting the real issue.

Neither guns nor gas stations are responsible for murders in the City of Brotherly Love. It’s the soulless criminals with no regard for the sanctity of human life who are to blame. The longer anti-gun activists like those at The Trace try to shift the public’s attention away from the real problem, the longer it will take to stop the killings.


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This story is part of the Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project and is published here with their permission.

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    • If I were polled, I would think what is commonly call Stop N Robs would be a more likely source of inanimate killings. There is a reason why they are called Stop N Robs and it isn’t because of their high prices for junk food. Even the cops calle them that. It is especially true because upper management, safely ensconced in their gated communities guarded by private security and individual home surveillance, security alarms proscribe self-defense articles for their front line troops. They put up shields for the plague, but nothing to defend their employees from robbery and mayhem.

  1. Anyone who lives near a gas station knows they are magnets for people. People who panhandle from other gas station customers to buy tall boys and cigarettes. People who very often seek to self-medicate their problems away which in turn attracts people who sell this medication they desire.

    They’re populated, warm, open 24 hours. If I were a vagrant, looking to spend time with peers in a place where it mattered not if I showered or was visibly intoxicated and had no cover charge or drink minimum I’d spend a lot of time hanging around gas stations.

    Booze, smokes, drugs, hookers, a free paper with a Sudoku to pass the time, more drama than the best BBC mystery has to offer and a whole lot of people who are just like me. The opium den of the modern world. A home away from home where everybody knows your name.

  2. assault gas stations with high capacity gas tanks are the problem …. says left liberal agenda Trace using incorrect attempt at second grade math yet again.

    • Where do you think antifa gets the gasoline for their Molotov cocktails? Matches and kindling take too long to start burning a bourgeois capitalist running dog lackey imperialist exploiter of the oppressed proletariat (aka a local store).

  3. Gas stations make little enough money sell gas – just having to put 2 attendants on in a shift will raise their cost and raise the cost per gallon. Adding an armed guard will just make gasoline more expensive at these places.

    These stations are NOT so-called “gun free” areas, the stations should have no liability against the violent acts of those not employed by them.

    • They don’t have any liability in terms of violent crime acts of those not employed by them. This is an attempt to make them liable by mandating requirements, for example security cameras not installed per the law then they can be held liable then by not taking precautions required by law because the myth is that security cameras some way or another magically ward off all violent crime like garlic and crosses ward off the traditional movie vampire.

      • We had that problem here at one point in the past prior constitutional carry. The state mandated that certain public places open 24 hours were required to have a ‘no firearms permitted’ sign. If the place had the sign they could not be held liable if someone got shot on their property, if they did not have the sign they could be held liable if someone got shot on their property. The reasoning was that if they were doing what the state said for ‘security and safety’ then they had done all they could by meeting the requirement thus would not be liable because they took the required precautions. Never mind that someone still got shot on the property with the sign.

      • You touch on what is legal doctrine in California. Very generally, a land owner (usually a bar by the way) can be held liable for failing to take adequate safety precautions on its or adjoining property (a parking lot next to the bar) where the owner knew or should have known of the danger to patrons but failed to take reasonable measures to mitigate the risk. Such measures may include better lighting–but having a security guard present was a bridge too far for the California Supreme Court, recognizing the limited duty owed and the extremely high cost of that protection. So adequate lighting and cameras are one thing, security guards another.
        By way of commentary, from what I have seen in the news etc. many of these crimes involve BGs who drive in, commit a crime, and drive off. How do you stop those crimes?

        • You don’t stop them until they are stopped.

          Yeah, that sounds sort of weird to say but its true. I”l give you a real life example.

          Where we used to live there was a big problem with convenience stores, and other type of stores, getting robbed or customers/employees getting shot/stabbed/beaten. Several each week. It got bad. Not only in the stores, stuff was happening in the parking lots too. Home invasions were at three to four a week, people were routinely assaulted just being in their front yards. Law abiding people had their lives ruined by the crime, friends and family killed or permanently disabled, the community was in fear as a whole.

          Then crime surged; Rapes and other assaults increased, home invasion increased, store robberies increased, more people got serious injured or killed. Our small unincorporated community was now a big city crime area. If you wanted to go grocery shopping the serious joke was you needed to take a infantry squad with you. UPS/FedEx/Amazon all stopped delivering to the area and you had to make a 60 mile round trip to a drop off location to pick up a package. Even the USPS curtailed mail delivery to twice a week between the hours of 10 AM AND 2 pm and then they were escorted by a trail car with a fire team of U.S. Marshals, if your mail didn’t get delivered then even though the post office had it available for delivery on the truck (at 2PM they left the area) you traveled to the post office 60 miles round trip to get it the next day or wait until the mail delivery came around again and maybe you would get it then. This surge went on for four months before constitutional carry arrived and we were over run with crime. People were moving away, $400,000.00 homes just abandoned overnight and people moved away, houses stayed vacant and empty because they couldn’t be sold because of the high crime and the gangs trashed them, businesses started closing up.

          Yeah, we had permitting before constitutional carry but it was a nightmare to get a permit, they were rarely issued, so not many did so hardly anyone carried.

          Law enforcement did all they could for the crime, but overall though it was not enough. Stores hired armed security, put up cameras all over the place, changed hours … all the standard stuff, but it didn’t do any good. It still persisted, we were over run with it. Property values dropped more than 70% as the area became known as a ‘high crime area’. We were located near the state lines of a tri-state area, and the gangs would cross the state line commit their crimes and scurry back across the state line.

          Then, we manged to get rid of the state legislature road blocks to constitutional carry by voting idiot democrats out of office. Constitutional carry arrived, places started taking down their ‘no firearms’ signs, and suddenly there were a lot of law abiding people carry guns, employees could arm up. But the bad guys didn’t get the memo right away and failed to recognize that change had happened, criminals are slow to realize when their time is over in areas where they dominated, until they start getting shot a lot by their victims. And shoot a lot of them is what law abiding victim people were forced to do, so they did. Overall crime dropped ~70% in the area within a couple of months and continued a decline, store robberies went from several weekly to maybe one sometimes two unsuccessful attempts a year, it became very rare for anyone to be assaulted in a parking lot or anywhere else, rapes stopped, no more store employees were shot or stabbed or beaten, all sorts of crime went away, and law enforcement could easily handle what was left.

          Like I said, you don’t stop them until they are stopped.

  4. Is philly where they called bulletproof glass at gas stations and convenience stores “white supremacy” and wanted to remove it all?

  5. Philly had issues with shootings in random places outside of the typical stupid places during stupid times long before I moved to NY. At this point they are either making shit up for grant funding or trying to sell electric vehicles with gun control as a secondary objective.

      • Between spending a day in the line to get an EV charged at a hopefully working charging station or 5 minutes to fill the tank and pay, I know what I prefer.

        • Me too. Electric is the future.
          I especially like the way everything needs a battery. You have to put a battery in a battery to get the button to turn on the battery that turns on the other battery that powers alexis that changes the power settings on my variable powered blue tooth equiped riffle scope.

        • Interestingly, the rage these days amounts to extending the life of the battery. Most Engineers worship at the Altar Of Efficiency.
          Highly efficient power supplies use “Switching” technology that abruptly turns current flow on and off, emulating an efficient radio transmitter. Old night vision stuff using High-Voltage Gen1 phoyomultiplier tubes (Russky, A/N PVS-2 or -4) gave off noise like a trucker yelling into a CB radio. Sensitive receivers can hear and home in on this noise. If you think you are safe and unseen looking through one of these antiques in a tactical situation, you are mistaken. Same goes for that cell phone on your hip, wind meter, range finder, etc; though they are MANY, MANY thousands of times quieter.

  6. Vulnerable and many there with their first or second most valuable possession .
    So many are clueless and not paying attention to their surroundings.
    Target rich environment for criminals.

  7. These places are called transitional spaces. People tend to pass through them without situational awareness. The bad guys know this and take them by surprise. To be safe, you need to have your head on a swivel. The principal benefit of video surveillance is that it provides evidence to support a victim who fights back.

    Today, virtually all “gas stations” are just convenience stores with gas pumps in the parking lot. To me, a “gas station” is a place where you can get your vehicle repaired as well as buy fuel. Non-automotive sales are limited to a couple of vending machines with soft drinks and candy bars.

    • Full service gas stations gradually phased out as cars grew more reliable and needed less active maintenance, and the automotive service industry started specializing in response. Now we have tire and brake service, oil change and lubrication service, exhaust service, engine service, interior and detailing service, and yes, fuel (self-)service all as separate businesses. As fuel profit has always been measured in pennies-per-gallon, self-service gas stations needed to make money somewhere, so they started selling groceries at cost-of-convenience markup.

      Trivia: Before the advent of modern rust-proofing and sealants, the external parts of cars needed regular re-coats of grease to ward off corrosion and water damage. The term “grease monkey” originally referred to the full-service gas station attendant who re-greased your external parts, an involved and dirty job usually handed off to the new guy. Nowadays it’s used for garage mechanics in general.

      • other than steering and drivetrain (kingpins, ball joints, tie rod ends, u- joints, swingarm pivots, idler and pitman arm) components, what external parts? zerk fittings are messy? you can still get into sealed components with a piercing needle.

        • We’re probably not talking about even 1950’s cars here. Old stuff had fairly exposed stacked leaf springs that occasionally liked being disassembled and greased, then put back. If they were covered with a leather boot, your grease needle was needed. Sliding drive shaft couplings, distributor, generator and water pump grease cups; steering box, door hinges, starter bendix and shifter linkages were a few more locations for lube. My old 27 Chevy had (external to the drum contracting) mechanical brakes (rear only). Steel rods and linkages all the way from the pedal to the metal. Couldn’t hurt to keep those working smoothly! Cars were just motorized buggies long ago, with the horse unhitched. And expensive, unfamiliar technology to boot. Gunms haven’t evolved nearly so much!

  8. Limiting hours: brilliant idea! As if a late-night fuel stop in some blue sh!thole wasn’t horrifying enough, now you’re stuck there with no gas because you didn’t exhaustively research every municipal tyranny along your route.

        • I love it! It reminds me of “The Simpsons” scene where a laser-like concentrated sunbeam from the Springfield Ozone Hole chases Milhouse around town.

        • That’s a good episode. Personally, my favorite is “Mr. Plow”.

          “Now we play the Waiting Game… Awww the Waiting Game sucks. Let’s play Hungry Hungry Hippos!”

        • I always enjoyed their equal-opportunity mockery, either staying out of politics, or appearing to stake a position only to twist it into a quirk or joke. Then they got hardcore TDS and quit trying, just assuming that anything non-leftist is automatically funny. I still enjoy the old Christmas episodes, though.

    • @Kyle, What about gas pump limits. The local station I use has 18 and it just not make sense as to why any station would need 18 pumps!

  9. making sure gas stations arent available at all hours because of violence is how the environmentalists are going to push electric cars? 4D chess right there.

  10. The “Trace” in it’s plethora of urban violence tales fails to address the elephant in the room and that’s the “usual suspects” who commit the crimes. 99.99% of these urban shootings which are the “Trace’s” bread and butter are committed by that pesky 6% of the population which has the dubious distinction of committing the violence and being it’s largest victim.

    This demographic refuses to fix itself no matter how much time and money is available. Recent history has shown that only incarceration mitigates the damage they cause.

  11. who among us. is surprised that the Democrats have decided to blame anything and anyone other than the actual people? Democrats should change their official name to Thugs-R-us.

  12. The Author’s reading comprehension is not only low in regards to the original article but as usual he is pushing the usual far right agenda which is “Let’s do nothing about gas station murders and hope the problem goes away”.

    The proposed law of mandatory security cameras is a good idea and I would also put up very big signs saying “we are watching all of our customers via security cameras”. In high crime areas putting restrictions on hours of operation would indeed save lives both of the customers and the hapless employees forced to work at such low paying high risk occupations.

    Hiring visible armed security guards patrolling the parking lot would also be a plus. Since the greed mongers that own gas stations make large amounts of money they can afford to hire a few guards.

    quote———–Neither guns nor gas stations are responsible for murders in the City of Brotherly Love.———-quote

    A laughable and ignorant statement. The “Iron Pipeline” funnels in thousands of second hand unvetted guns into Chicago putting the deadly weapons right into the hands of criminals and lunatics. If this is not enough proof to convince the paranoid far right that Universal Background Checks are desperately need then nothing will convince these people that sane gun laws are needed.

  13. I’m doing,,,,,,???,,, I’m doing ev ev ev I’m doing, com on man, stuff.
    No more gas stations no more gas station violets

    • No more gas station violets?

      And just where the fuck are people supposed to get a sad looking wrong flower for Valentine’s Day while driving home?

      No more gas station violets… goddamn barbarians around here.

  14. Well, pResident Biden says we will soon have all electric cars, so gas stations will no longer be needed. Crime problem solved.
    I had a cousin in the gas business for decades. He sold the business and retired several years ago. One of the last actual service stations in the area in south eastern Minnesota. He made his money doing service and repair work. Gas was a break even sale. At best he made 5 cents a gallon, and in later years it was 2 cents. Soda, cigarettes, and snack foods were the high mark up items. Then the licenses and liability insurance were an added expense that finally convinced him to sell out and retire.


  16. why don’t you gas-passers say something using 1 or 2 sentences then stfu, or maybe apply for an edu-makation “job”? lawyers-in-training?

  17. gun free zones are “shoot here ” signs. I had more action in a 7-11 on the graveyard shift than any government or security job.closing the place after hours is not the answer. some traveler just might need gas on a long road trip. I know , that sometimes was me coming back from , ,transporting someone to their new secure home with extra bars on the windows . but in these places , the people pay taxes, and sometimes those taxes are to go to police presence, like in trouble spots. and having the cops come in to get coffee ( or just check up on the place) is a good idea. as well as having armed people ( and trained) people working there as well.


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