Defensive gun use
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A Memphis woman was taken into custody and then released without charges following a defensive shooting in the parking lot of her apartment complex.

The incident occurred at Brentwood Place Apartments (Sycamore View Road) around 6:30 in the morning on Thursday last week. The woman was alerted to the burglary by noise outside her window.

When she looked out, she saw a burglar breaking into her neighbor’s car with a coat hanger, rummaging through the car, and then breaking into her car by smashing the window. As the burglar was about to run off with his loot, she walked outside her apartment to confront him and, very soon after that, shot him in the arm.

Neighbors ran outside in response to the sound of gunfire as well as the woman’s screams for help. Jhatavieus Corley, the alleged burglar, was lying on the ground.

“We heard someone screaming, ‘Help me,'” said Brande Cole, the neighbor whose car was also broken into. “I ran back there, my sister ran out. The girl had a gun in her hand. He was laying on the ground. She was shaking and said someone else call the police because they weren’t responding fast enough for her.”

When police arrived, Corley was transported to the hospital with non-critical injuries. The woman who shot him was taken into custody as well, but after questioning, she was released without charges. Corley, on the other hand, has been charged with burglary of a motor vehicle and theft.

In Tennessee, it is not legal to shoot someone who is breaking into your vehicle unless they present a direct threat to your life or a direct threat of serious bodily injury. Because few details about this altercation were released, we don’t know what convinced police that this shooting was justified. What we do know is that by walking outside to confront the burglar in the first place, the woman was walking a fine line.

Before the woman was released from custody, when it was still unknown whether she’d be charged, Brande Cole (that neighbor whose car was also broken into) spoke out in support of her actions:

“I think it’s scary if you go outside and someone is breaking into your stuff and you don’t know if he has a gun or not. So with adrenaline running through, you just react,” said Cole. “I don’t think she should get in trouble for it, though.”

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      • Since the guy was only shot in the arm, they can get away with it. Now if he was dead, there would be a lot more attention. Face it, who get’s more attention, the guy stealing the 65″ Smart Flat Screen or the kid stealing a Snickers bar.

        • He’s dead because he threatened (and put into action) serious bodily harm and potential death. Not because of snickers

        • Face it, who gets more attention, a white guy shooting a black guy or ANYONE else shooting a black guy?

      • “This doesn’t sound like one of the 100% crystal clear DGUs”

        Wouldn’t rely on 100% crystal clear. Cops have no burden to protect, and they have no burden to sort out a shooting. It is simpler to arrest everyone, and let the DA sort it out.

  1. “… by walking outside to confront the burglar in the first place, the woman was walking a fine line.” Cause how are criminals supposed to get money and stuff if we try to protect our stuff. She should be locked up!

    • … walking outside to confront the burglar in the first place, the woman was walking a fine line.

      There should be zero — ZERO — legal risk to the victim of robbery if the victim confronts the criminal for stealing his/her property. Anything else is injustice.

      Whether or not confronting the criminal provides a legal justification to use deadly force is a whole different matter.

      • She has a legal right to be in the parking lot, so she has a legal right to defend herself there, if attacked.
        The line she was walking is either initiating lethal force to stop a property crime (illegal in most states), or confronting a potentially violent criminal to protect the contents of her car (an unnecessary safety risk).

        • An unnecessary risk perhaps, but it still shouldn’t be considered a crime. If a criminal wants to make that unnecessary risk become a necessary use of lethal force, that should be on the criminal not the victim.

        • I am unprepared, *today*, to react rationally to someone breaking his way into my BMW, and the damn thing is 7+ years old now. When it was new, I would have probably shot someone for deliberately scratching it. I’m hoping I never have to deal with it. I know what is required, just dunno if I can do it.

        • “…a fine line?” I think we are approaching a fine line in our society when a person protecting his/her property will take action, and society will engage in such a way terminate the criminal, to hide the victim’s body, and deny anything took place…..kind of a Hillary Clinton “I have no recollection” scenario. Gunshots? Yeah, I may have heard gunshots!

        • Many police departments are refusing to respond to these kinds of property crimes, telling citizens to allow the crime to occur and then to contact their insurance companies. The cops ain’t comin’.

    • “She was shaking and said someone else call the police because they weren’t responding fast enough for her.”
      They never will, dear, they never will…

      • …except….to arrest and disarm the victim….A $70 he construction/traffic detail, free coffees , and French drillers at Dunk’N Doughnuts 🍩!!!! Or a U.S. citizen “Rolling a Red Ball/ Red Flag Law/Minority Report…”

        • Then why don’t YOU become a police officer and show us all how it SHOULD be done? Put up or shut up.

        • “Then why don’t YOU become a police officer and show us all how it SHOULD be done?”

          As a taxpayer, I employ police. Thus, I have standing to tell police how they should act in my employ. Cops, firefighters, doctors, lawyers, any specialist is a hired hand; never forget it.

        • I’d become a police officer. How I would do it is sleep, sleep through the whole damn mess. 911 zzzzzzzzzzzzzz It’ll sort itself out. Speeding, zzzzzzzzzzzzzz after they crash or kill somebody they’ll slow down.zzzzzzzzzzzzzz , oh time to clock out and go home already, what a day

  2. If shooter had been male would outcome have been the same?

    Are prosecutors less likely to charge females in similar situations? Of course we don’t know all of the story, but article states …”As the burglar was about to run off with his loot, she walked outside her apartment to confront him and, very soon after that, shot him in the arm…”

    I wonder what the stats would show across the US for male and female DGUs.

    • DGU? Maybe. Sounds more likely either illegal use of lethal force or a ND.

      Unfortunately WE will probably never hear the-rest-of-the-story.

      • Here’s my story; Hey, asshole, get away from my car!” “Fuck you, come any closer and I’ll kill you!” Bang! I don’t see the shooter having broken any laws.

        • I like your story, remember you have to tell a story that makes it appear you were I fear of your life, unfortunately today you don’t have the right to shoots low life who is doing nothing more that stealing you properly that you bought with hard earned money. He would just run away with your property that you will never see again even if they catch him the next day. You should be able to continue shooting until the scum is never capable of victimizing another person, more killing of perpetrators by the victims would put the fear of god into this scum.

        • LarryinTX –
          I’m with you. The perp got caught and likely threatened the woman with violence thinking he would be intimidating her out of his way so he could make off with the goods… Then he becomes aware of his mistake – she is armed and isn’t taking the bait, and to emphasize that point she let him have it. Jhatavieus found out that being a male criminal isn’t a suit of armor. The woman did the right thing, and this is Nashville, not Boston, so crime victim decides one crime a day is enough, and no charges will be filed. In some parts of the USA liberals don’t run the show, and to quote Martha Stewart, “That is a very good thing.”

      • There was NO LETHAL FORCE used…. the perp was alive when arrested…. it wasn’t even excessive as a gal probably can’t take the guy down unless she’s trained big time.

        • Lol, how are you figuring firing a weapon at someone isn’t lethal force? Just cause he lived doesn’t make the gun a less lethal tool. It’s a handgun, they’re notorious for their ineffectiveness at killing people outright. Go point one at a cop and let them know they can’t arrest you for assault with a deadly weapon since no one died (well, assuming you live to that point).

  3. Should responsible gun owners be satisfied if no charges are brought? Satisfied a woman violated the law, for good reason? Or should we declare this woman the IGOOTD?

    As it stands, and assuming no charges are ever filed, the shooter is vulnerable to law suit for wrongful injury. With no acquittal to shield the shooter, seems like her life can still be ruined.

    • I’m not sure how your question relates to this article. Did you mean “responsible gun owners” in contrast to the woman in the article?

      • “Did you mean “responsible gun owners” in contrast to the woman in the article?”

        Yes. Responsible gun owners should know the laws in their jurisdiction. If use of deadly force to protect property is prohibited, responsible gun owners should know that and act accordingly. If a LEGAL gun owner does not know the law, or decides to ignore it, is that legal gun owner responsible, or irresponsible? If irresponsible, should responsible gun owners (as opposed to legal gun owners) be supportive of irresponsibility – no matter how we may view the outcome of the event.

        Did that clear it up? Or make it worse?

        • Sam I Am,

          You ask an incredibly important question.

          Your question also highlights another problem: our laws are often unjust (and therefore should not exist).

          If the day ever comes where our laws declare that it is illegal to resist rape, such a law would be unjust and I personally would never find a person “guilty” for violating such a law.

          I mention that somewhat extreme example to make the point crystal clear. Laws that punish property owners for confronting thieves — and for using appropriate force if those thieves turn violent — are unjust. Whether or not a robbery victim chooses to expose themselves to such punishment might boil down to the cost of the property loss versus the cost of punishment.

        • While I do understand the theory of unjust law, should we support violation, or not? Just because we like the outcome of violation, do we encourage more, or declaim the violators until the laws are changed?

          Can we continue to tell ourselves that legal gun owners are among the most law abiding, if we herald law violations just because we endorse the outcome?

        • It’s not illegal to confront someone breaking into a car (but it’s not the smartest idea). If the criminal then escalates the situation, the confronter would be justified in using lethal force.

        • “…the confronter would be justified in using lethal force.”

          As an attorney for the estate of the deceased, after reading out the law prohibiting deadly force in protection of objects (property if you like), I would argue that taking a firearm to confront the deceased showed intent to escalate. The shooter could have stayed indoors and called police (letting things take a different course), or could have gone into the lot, remaining at a distance, and shouting at the deceased. The deceased, being faced with an agitated person with a deadly weapon, attempted to defend his life, and charged the shooter. The actions of the shooter, imprudent and dangerous, initiated an unnecessary confrontation. Had the shooter not appeared, armed, on the scene, the deceased would have remained alive.

          I would depend on the jury being ignorant of guns and gun laws, and upon jurors being “reasonable” people who would never think to confront someone breaking into cars. “Reasonable” people who would know intuitively it is unreasonable to take a gun to confront a dangerous person. I would stand on the law, not justice.

        • Sam I Am,

          Personally, I do not use the “most law abiding” moniker because of the very quagmire that we are discussing.

          Rather, I focus on the key terms “responsible” and “good” — where both terms refer to the point that People of the Gun are responsible (going to great lengths to prevent harm to innocents and bystanders) and good (going to great lengths to preserve the lives, liberty, and possessions of good people in our communities, states, and nation.

          In other words I highlight how People of the Gun are HUGE assets (as opposed to liabilities) to our communities, states, and nation.

        • Sam, I take a firearm everywhere I go for 15+ years now, and I am NOT going to disarm myself before confronting an actual criminal, let’s not be stupid. I am also not good enough or young enough to get in a scuffle with a (possibly doped up) criminal. When I tell him to leave, he either will or he will present a threat to me, at which time I will shoot him.

        • There is no piece of property (or other item I own) that cannot be replaced. The only thing of value neither I, nor, my wife can replace is me (although at strategic moments wife reminds me that with life insurance I am worth more to her dead, than alive).

          Doesn’t make much sense to become entangled in a situation where if you win you lose. Breaking into my shed, car, house (when I am not inside)? Have at it. I will watch and report details to the cops. Breaking into my home while I am present, entirely different matter.

          In my little burg, it is never self-defense if you leave your home, apartment, or business in order to initiate/engage in an armed confrontation. Such is considered aggressive action, and all the self-defense rules work against you. I have no time to argue the point with police or juries. And cannot honestly encourage anyone else to do differently.

          There is such a thing as being dead right.

        • Where do you get “deadly force”?? She did NOT shoot him center of mass, could be she’s a lousy shot, or she refused to USE lethal force. Most of the time the GSW to an arm is NOT fatal, but IS very effective if the perp threatens to bash your head in. Tends to let the steam out real quick. “Responsible gun owners” could take a lesson from her, cops could too as many of them pull a mag-dump as soon as their BP goes up. It’s why I no longer TRUST the Police to do what’s RIGHT, they often get away with murder. Civilians don’t.

        • In law, if you intentionally employ a deadly weapon against another, fatal result is not required to qualify the weapon use as “deadly”. “Deadly force” is a type of force, not a result. Shooting someone in the arm will not absolve you of attempted murder. To qualify as attempted murder, something of potential to cause death must be involved. Laws that allow a person to defend themselves with equivalent counter-force, “…up to and including deadly force” does not carry the requirement to actually terminate another human; stopping the threat through use of deadly force is a legitimate outcome from applying deadly force.

          Can’t imagine prevailing at trial on the basis that someone didn’t use deadly force because the shooter didn’t cause death.

    • Should responsible gun owners be satisfied if no charges are brought? I’m okay with the outcome here, but I see your point. Great question because what if she killed him over that? What if he was a kid? I did some pretty dumb things as a kid. I’m lucky no one ever shot me. We need more details.

      Satisfied a woman violated the law, for good reason? See above.
      Or should we declare this woman the IGOOTD? I don’t know what this means.

      As it stands, and assuming no charges are ever filed, the shooter is vulnerable to law suit for wrongful injury. With no acquittal to shield the shooter, seems like her life can still be ruined.
      —- Unlikely some numbskull lawyer takes this case. I’m sure it would have to be for zero money until a settlement is reached. Even once you get the judgement, you still have to collect. I’m guessing this girl probably isn’t loaded (with money).

      • “Or should we declare this woman the IGOOTD? I don’t know what this means.”

        Irresponsible Gun Owner Of The Day

        “Even once you get the judgement, you still have to collect.”

        This subject is rarely discussed. It is especially tricky if a matter remains in small claims court.

  4. As the article notes, we don’t know the details. Did poor Mr. J — I like the note above asking if they created his name by throwing Scrabble letters on a board — come toward her threateningly? Odds are he did. She’s a woman. Did she feel threatened? Good chance she did. But ‘details will be forthcoming.’

    Unfortunately, we are NOT legally allowed to shoot someone who is stealing our ‘horse,’ or attempting to, or damaging our horse. In olden days, horse thieves were hung. Today? A tap on the head, and off you go again to steal again. I read years ago that in Washington state, there were nice folks convicted of over 20 car thefts, and there was no prison time, no nothing. Green light to steal away. Not considered a ‘serious’ enough crime. Except it’s very serious for those whose lives are affected by loss of their horse, their ability to get to work, shop, take kids to school, the cost of getting a new car.

    A couple nights ago, around 11, my car alarm went off. I looked out the window, and saw nothing. I grabbed a gun, and went outside. I figured if someone was out there, I wanted to know. Was I ready to shoot someone for being out there? No. Would I have shot someone if he or she said, ‘Sorry man,’ and ran off? No. But in the event it was someone who intended harm, I wasn’t content to go outside unarmed.

    Should I have stayed inside and called 911? For what? “My car alarm went off.” Sorry, not coming. If there was someone outside, doing whatever they were doing, enough to trigger the alarm, I wanted to defend myself and my home from someone potentially doing more than fiddling with the door of my car. I wasn’t content to just sit inside and hope that, if there was someone, they would just go away. If the alarm eventually stops — they often do after 60 seconds — and the perp (assuming there is one) sees no response from inside, what’s next? Break into the car? Just the car?

    Foolish on my part? Didn’t feel like it. Doesn’t feel like it today. If you want to come on my property with ill intent, I’ll confront you. I’m open to being told that I was indeed foolish. Other opinions welcome. Similar situations will likely arise again.

    • Not foolish. The definition of “property” is that it’s the domain of its proprietor. If you own anything at all, but are artificially barred from autonomously maintaining it as “yours”, then is it really “property”? Of course not. Are you supposed to just not-use or be avoid being within visual range of an article of property to avoid the possibility that a confrontation arises from another person attempting to take that property? Which brings up another interesting point; If you have to pay “tax” on an article of property and if it’s not payed, the property is taken away, then can it actually be defined as “property”? I’d argue that anything under that constraint, necessarily, can’t be defined as property without contradicting the definition of “property”.

      • Sam I Am: “The deceased, being faced with an agitated person with a deadly weapon, attempted to defend his life, and charged the shooter. The actions of the shooter, imprudent and dangerous, initiated an unnecessary confrontation. Had the shooter not appeared, armed, on the scene, the deceased would have remained alive.”

        The above quote has many flaws: Seems the deceased made several mistakes in judgement. Perhaps if the deceased had obeyed the instructions of the shooter, he would still be living. Had the shooter been intent on shooting the deceased there would have been no time for the deceased to feel much of anything. How was the shooter to know it the deceased was armed or not? Had the shooter appeared unarmed the deceased could easily be the other way around. What is someone expected to do when witnessing a break in, watch idly by as your property is destroyed and or stolen? The shooter did not initiate a thing, ask your self ladies and gentlemen of the jury who was breaking into whose property? Who initiated this incident by BREAKING the law? The shooter was doing what reasonable people do, which is, protect their property…….and much more……

        • Your comments may be logical, and attractive to POTG, but I would not be presenting my case to POTG.

          You note that the shooter could not know if the deceased was armed. In such case, the threat of death or grievous bodily harm is not present.

          You note that the shooter could not know the full nature of the risk, and presenting a firearm would be prudent to prevent further theft, or possible harm to the shooter. In such case, the shooter would be guilty of menacing, and/or brandishing.

          In any event, if (IF) the local law prohibits using deadly force to protect inanimate objects, then the shooter broke the law…and I would hammer that fact. Remember, I would not be arguing “right”, or “wrong”, but the law (you know – if the facts are on your side, hammer the facts; if the law is on your side, hammer the law; if neither is on your side, hammer the table). Arguing unjustified violation of the law to a jury highly suspicious of guns, gun owners, and people who use a gun against an unarmed person.

  5. Police used to be restricted by the constitution, you know, like probable cause. Now days, standard procedures introduced by federalized “experts” over the decades have prepped the LE field to transition into full communism. We are in the mid point of transition now, where they have to admit compliance to the constitution in times of scrutiny but in standard procedure just hop right over it. It boggle my imagination that cops are completely unaware of the history of “police” as an institutional function in the US. “Police” didn’t even exist until the 1830s, and even then only existed on the east coast following the model of British Monarch. They were privatized and payed by the large industrial and textile manufacturing plants. This had the affect of eliminating the use of militias which are a necessary part of the constitution. The private police would quell strikes by workers or suppress riots when they got really bad which would have been the domain of militias by constitutional standards. The civil war basically federalized the US. Police became much more widespread by the beginning of the 20th century. The difference between “police” and constitutional law enforcement is that police are paid to enforce law without accountability where as constitutional policing was delegated by elected officials, which today still somewhat exist as “sheriff dept” representing the elected county official. The transition to communism has accelerated post 9/11 by the implementation of NIMS under DHS which seeds grant lotteries to all county and municipal entities. The entities compete for grant awards by remaining ICS compliant at all times. They sell it to departments as “this is a standard system for national emergency, and here’s some free stuff”. Obviously over time the seed benefit increases which has the effect of reorganizing the entities to comply with the measures to receive grater benefits. That is the entire point of the program, to slowly federalize and eventually over-take the chain of funding for municipalities and counties. This will result in a conflict of interest since the entities no longer represent the law of the people but will transition to enforce the law that pays them. That’s what police fail to understand. The 1033 program through DLA and NIMS compliance isnt for your benefit, it’s to buy you out slowly without telling you so. At some point law will fully cross the lines of any legal standard and will become totally-counter-constitutional, it’s already happening. Each time the law progresses down that path (which has been happening slowly for a long time), police officers have to decide “is this right?”. They either stay or leave. No reward for leaving. Most stay, for a pay check.– So understand that when the media promotes stories bashing police it’s purpose is to drive a wedge between police and populations and force the police to tell themselves, “it’s us or them”. When the situation someday crosses the threshold to police simply fighting civilian resistors of globalism in civil war, which is coming, don’t say you weren’t aware, and don’t expect sympathy. We have a constitutional republic, it’s being subverted by a foreign influence which makes the situation very complex. If you can’t respect the constitution and must violate it because it’s your department’s policy, you are a part of the despotism the founders wrote so much about. No better than the british.

      • Did you make it through high school civics or current events? His statement HAS EVERYTHING to do with why police are forced to act the way they do.

    • The buying off of police departments throughout the country has been going on for a long time, as you note. Police departments are effectively SWAT teams, some departments in much greater measure than others, but the intent and purpose is clear.

      Back in the late 90’s, I had a neighbor who had had high security clearance in the military. He said then that the military — and by extension, the police — were being trained and prepared for warfare here in America, against American citizens.

      We hope that, when crunch time comes, the police and military honor their vows to the Constitution, and side with we the people. It’s likely a thin hope.

      For years, I’ve followed and supported John Whitehead, who is the founder of The Rutherford Institute. He has been warning of all that is happening for many years: the erosion of the Constitution, the militarization of the local police, and how it’s been done. John Whitehead is one of the few who truly fights for the little guys and gals.

      • Mr. Buley;

        I too am a veteran of the US Armed Forces, and held high classified clearance and I can tell you that what you have said is a complete conspiracy theory. The repeating of this fake story has been going on for decades and is a complete falsehood. I don’t care if your friend told you this, your story makes no sense and I know from personal experience that this is a big lie that military haters use to keep stirring up anti military sentiment. Your contribution also has zero to do with the story being discussed.

        • USVeteran, thanks for your comment. And I’m sincerely glad to hear you tell me other than what my friend did.

          Many times, the threads go in directions that have little or nothing to do with the original article. It’s one of the things that make it interesting, at least to me. I wasn’t responding directly to the original article, instead to the comment by buddy.

          Again, thanks for your note, and for your service.

    • Buddy,
      None of what you said is sensible, nor congruent with fact. I see nothing in that rambling thesis that points to anything presented in this story. I’m sure you have a point, but get to it man. People are not going to wade through that much verbose and poorly crafted prose and find any meaning in it.

      The only logical scenario in this situation is the woman witnessed a crime, and then the perp committed a second crime upon her arrival she confronted him, he made a third bad decision by standing up to her and he earned a bullet for his trouble. He made three mistakes and got what he deserved – End of story.

      • I would become a police officer and show how it’s done. Sleep, sleep through the whole damn mess,911 zzzz it’ll sort itself out, Speeding zzz after they crash or kill somebody they’ll probably slow down, zzzzz Huh time to clock out and go home already, what a daym

  6. This should reduce crime a little bit for a while. When word gets out an extra hole got created in someone maybe it might be time to pay off thieving for a while.

      • LOL, you mean the very modern progressive philosophy of justice. Until very recently in the Occident it was perfectly acceptable to flog, draw and quarter, brand, cut of ears and noses as punishment. Torture was considered an intrinsic part of interrogation. Indeed, the only form of interrogation. Justice in both the Occident and Orient has always been swift and brutal. Progress is soft and slow.

  7. Police treat break ins and even home burglaries like they are a joke. They REFUSE to try and find the person that committed the crime and when caught the DAs plea bargain the crimes to lesser offenses while Liberals and some Republicans want to let them out of jail EARLY when they finally do get put in jail.

  8. first, about juries. No one knows how juries are going to react in any situation. But there is such a thing as “nullification”.
    second, about the incident at hand. No comment, it could come back to bite me on the ass.
    third, going outside to confront the perp. Would you think to secure the residence, or just run out? What if the alarm was just a ruse to gain entry to the residence?

  9. If a car thief so much as pointed a wire coat hanger at me Id shoot him or her. If in my car. Even if it is 22 years old.
    Now touch one of my motorcycles or trike and the least you will loose is the fingers you used.
    Id take my chances over property here in Florida with a jury any day.

  10. What we do know is that by walking outside to confront the burglar in the first place, the woman was walking a fine line.

    ^ This looks like bullshit.

    If someone is breaking in my car, or not breaking into my car, I am entitled to walk to my car for any reason I want. It’s my car.

    If the burglar then assaults me and I mag dump him into the next life, that’s his fault. All rules followed.

    • “If the burglar then assaults me and I mag dump him into the next life, that’s his fault. All rules followed.”

      Only if you do not present your weapon first. Only if you make no aggressive move toward the ALLEGED burglar. Only if the jury agrees.

  11. Steal other people’s stuff and get shot full of holes….sounds fair to me. If it ain’t yours don’t touch it, my stuff is worth more to me than your life.


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