Monday, December 31, 2007

An interesting court case involving an ACTUAL militia

The sentencing of Wayne Fincher last June attracted national attention from several pro-Second Amendment Internet bloggers, which led to a Montana lawyer taking on the case for free.

The 61-year-old lieutenant commander of the Militia of Washington County was arrested in November, 2006 after federal agents seized illegal machine guns and sawed-off shotguns from militia headquarters and his home nearby.

On June 22, 2007, U. S. District Judge Jimm L. Hendren sentenced Fincher to 6. 5 years in prison with two additional years of supervised release and ordered him to pay a $ 1, 000 fine. Fincher was convicted in January of possessing machine guns and possessing a firearm not registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record. Fincher is now being held at a federal prison facility in Forrest City.

The case caught the attention of attorney Stewart Rhodes, ex-firearms instructor and Internet blogger from Las Vegas. After following the case at the trial court level, Rhodes took the case to attorney Quentin Rhoades, of Montana, who agreed to represent Fincher pro bono during the appeal proceedings. Although he had never met Stewart Rhodes, the two men had worked on previous cases together.

Rhoades said he agreed to take on the case for the good of the country. "I feel like it's a question of states' rights, a question of whether the federal government is using too heavy of a hand with people and whether it's following its own Constitution," he said. Rhoades filed a brief on Fincher's appeal in the 8 th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Nov. 9, stating that Fincher is entitled to protection under the Second Amendment from criminal prosecution for violation of federal gun laws.

Rhoades argues in the brief that the Second Amendment protects the right to bear arms where reasonably related to the maintenance of a well-regulated militia. "In this case, Fincher, as an active member of an paramilitary organization whose mission it is to train, equip and mobilize the militia for call-up in time of need, is therefore entitled to Second Amendment protection," the brief states.

A response from the government is due Friday. Rhoades said he has had a couple of lengthy conversations with Fincher about the case and his interpretation of the Second Amendment. "He has some strong convictions about the rights of individual citizens of this country, the rights of states compared to the power of the federal government," he said. Rhoades said he finds Fincher's understanding of the law "very sophisticated, regardless of his hill country background. " "It's highly sophisticated and historically grounded, that's why I got involved," he said. "He may not be a lettered person, but he is very principled."

Rhoades said he admires Fincher and his beliefs. "I think he deserves somebody to go to bat for him," he said. "He's put himself on the line for what he believes to be the interest of this country.


Missouri pizza man shoots: "A Domino’s pizza deliveryman who shot and killed a would-be robber in Pagedale has a valid permit to carry a weapon and appears to have acted in self-defense, according to St. Louis County police. The driver, who works for the Domino’s franchise nearby in University City, delivered an order at 7 p.m. Thursday to a phony address in the 6500 block of Julian Avenue, where two armed men announced a robbery. The driver pulled his own pistol and fired shots, striking one of the robbers. Brian Smith, 19, of the 600 block of Ferguson Avenue in Ferguson, was pronounced dead at the scene, said officer Tracy Panus, the department spokeswoman. The other gunman fled. Police arrested a suspect this afternoon and booked him pending application of warrants, she said. Panus said the driver may have been fired upon, but was not wounded. She said officers found a pistol at the scene that hadn’t been fired. The driver surrendered his own weapon and showed officers a concealed-carry permit from Florida. Panus said officers verified the permit this afternoon. Panus said Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch’s office will review the police reports but added, "It doesn’t appear to us that (the driver) did anything wrong."

Tennessee: homeowner shoots at burglars: "Police are looking for two men and a woman they believe are responsible for 5 burglaries in Antioch. Police were close to capturing the three after they burglarized a house, and the burglars were scared off from another house after the homeowner shot at them.... "After the suspects plowed through this fence they jumped out of their van," said Sgt. John Patton. "That's when they ran to a home that's just beyond these woods. They tried to break in, but discovered the homeowner was home and he had a gun." Several shots were fired. Metro Police don't believe anyone was hit by the bullets, but it did put the three burglars back on the run. One of them ended up on James McGee's front porch. "He was trying to come up in my house, and I said no I can't let you up in my house, but I can let you use my phone," McGee said. The man told McGee his car had broke down. In the spirit of the holiday season McGee not only let the man use his phone, but he decided to give him a ride. During this entire exchange, police were nearby on the street. Police believe they know who is responsible for the rash of burglaries, but still have no one in custody."

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Texas man in critical condition after bar security guard shoots him: "A 28-year-old man was shot multiple times by a bar security guard early Saturday morning in the 100 block of West Rosedale Street, police said. A security guard at the Cowboy Palace bar told police he was acting in self-defense when he fired multiple shots a man in a red car who allegedly tried to run over the security guard. Jesus Torres was taken to John Peter Smith Hospital, where he was listed in critical condition. No arrests were made. Police seized the security guard's weapon. Fort Worth police spokesman Lt. Dean Sullivan said detectives are investigating.

Missouri intruder dies of wound: "One of the intruders in an apparent home invasion in Columbia died Friday afternoon after he was shot by one of the occupants of the home. Henry Lee Brown, 23, was shot as he and another intruder kicked open the front door of an apartment on Old 63 early Thursday morning, according to a news release from the Columbia Police Department. He was pronounced dead at 1:43 p.m. Columbia police Sgt. Ken Hammond said Brown suffered a gunshot wound to the chin, which exited, then came back through his throat and became lodged in his chest. Hammond did not explain whether the bullet had ricocheted. At just past midnight Thursday, police responded to a call of shots fired at the apartment. Two people inside told police that two men had tried to kick open the door. One of the occupants retrieved a gun from another room, shot at the intruders as they came through the door and wounded Brown. Brown and the other unidentified man then ran from the apartment. As police talked with the two people at the scene, they were notified that Brown had been dropped off at Boone Hospital Center’s emergency room. He was later transferred to University Hospital because his injuries were so severe. Hammond said he doubts that charges will be filed against the person who shot Brown. Brown did have a criminal history that included convictions for drug crimes and for misdemeanor assault and trespassing."

WI: Bill would limit seizing of guns: "State lawmakers want to clip the power of the governor and local officials to seize people's guns during emergencies, saying that authority could trample the rights of citizens. Legislators said they decided to try to curb those powers after seeing New Orleans police officers take guns from people during the recovery from Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The Republican-run Assembly passed the bill this month on a bipartisan 84-13 vote, and the Democratic-led Senate is looking at doing the same soon. ... Twenty-one other states, including Louisiana, have passed similar laws since Hurricane Katrina, according to the National Rifle Association, which backs the law."

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Update on good neighbor Joe Horn

Joe Horn does not look like a vigilante. Overweight and ruddy-cheeked, he might pass for cherubic were he not 61 years old. Besides, cherubs do not kill people.

This will be a tense holiday period for Horn, who will soon learn whether he is to face a grand jury in Houston, Texas, to decide if he is to be tried over the killing of two burglars he saw raiding his neighbour's house. It is a case that has divided Texans into those who see Horn as a hero and those who see a reckless killer. But it is more complicated than that. Joe Horn is white. The dead burglars, Miguel Antonio Dejesus, 38, and Diego Ortiz, 30, were black and Horn's home has already been subject to a racial protest.

Horn rang police on November 14, when the pair broke into his neighbour's house. He was recorded telling the emergency call line that he was going to confront the men even as he was continually told to stay inside his home. He may have been emboldened by legislation, the so-called Castle Law, which was passed in Texas this year and gives people a stronger legal right to defend themselves with deadly force in their homes (or "castles"), cars and workplaces.

"Hurry up, man, because I am not lettin' 'em go," he told the emergency line. "I am going to be honest with you, I am not lettin' 'em go ... If I go out the front I am bringin' my shotgun with me ... I can't take a chance on getting killed over this. I am gonna shoot, I'm gonna shoot ... I have a right to protect myself, sir ... and the laws have been changed in this country since September the first and you know it and I know it ... and a shotgun is a legal weapon."

Warned that he could be hurt if he went outside with the gun, he replied: "Wanna make a bet. I'm gonna kill 'em ..." When told property rights were not worth taking someone's life for, Horn appeared immune to the instruction, as he gave a commentary: "They got a bag of loot ... Here I go, buddy. You hear the shotgun clickin' and I'm goin' ..."

The emergency transcript also detected Horn instructing the burglars, telling them that if they moved they were dead. The order was followed by the sound of several shotgun blasts.

A police spokesman, Captain Bud Corbett, says Horn's defence is the age-old issue of self-defence, and that he will not rely on the Castle Law, introduced in September. Horn instead says he was in fear once he rounded a corner of his house and was confronted by both burglars.

Corbett says comments by Horn during the emergency call were not necessarily relevant to what finally happened. "One can have a specific frame of mind one minute and a different frame of mind the next," Corbett says. "The frame of mind he has while he is in the house may not be the same state of mind when he was standing seven to 10 feet away. It was the deadly force statutes that were already in place [before September 1] that he was relying on when he says he came around the corner and came face to face with those people and they are on my property at that point."

Horn's account is that after he ordered the men not to move, they took off in different directions.

The bravado that seemed to fire up Horn before the shooting had left him when he returned into the house to tell the dispatcher in evident panic: "I had no choice ... They came in the front yard with me, man ... They came right in my yard." Although blasted at short range, one of the men managed to cross the street before collapsing and dying. The other ran to a nearby property despite mortal wounds. "It was that last little bit of energy and adrenalin they were running on," Corbett says. Further robbing the dead men of public sympathy was the revelation that both were illegal immigrants.

Police in Pasadena, Texas, handed their investigation report to the district attorney's office last week, but investigators were awaiting the results of final forensic analysis. "I have not heard of any physical evidence that contradicts [Horn's] account," Corbett says. Horn's lawyer, his friend Tom Lambright, did not return calls.


TX: Guard fatally shoots intruder: ""A man who reportedly sneaked into an east Dallas business late Wednesday was fatally shot by a man who was guarding the place, police said. ... A 24-year-old man who was hired to guard the business told police that he heard a garage door opening, but the remote-control opener had been stolen in an earlier burglary, McDonald said. The guard then confronted the man, McDonald said. The guard said the man approached him in a threatening manner so he shot him with a handgun."

Pa: 7-Eleven clerk shoots robber: "An Ingram convenience store clerk shot a would-be robber Christmas morning, then shot him again as he tried to flee, the store owners said. The masked bandit walked into the 7-Eleven on West Prospect Avenue about 4:30 a.m., said Vicky Bawa, whose family has owned the business for about 12 years. The intruder brandished a knife, jumped the counter and attacked the clerk, said Bawa, 25, of Robinson. The clerk, identified by Bawa as Kaelin Weber, 24, pulled out a handgun and fired. Bawa, who was not in the store at the time, said at least one shot hit the robber inside the store. She did not know on what part of his body. The man ran from behind the counter, out the door and across the street, she said. The gun-wielding clerk gave chase.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Alabama home invasion turns deadly: "A man apparently was fatally wounded by shots from his own firearm when it was taken away from him during a Christmas morning home invasion in Tallassee, authorities said. Investigators said two men had forced their way into the residence shortly after 2:30 a.m. Tuesday while the occupants were asleep. Once inside, one of the intruders held an occupant at gunpoint, but at some point had the handgun wrestled away and several rounds were fired at him. Both suspects fled the scene, and Tallapoosa County sheriff's officers said Lee Antion Donaldson, 29, of Montgomery was admitted to Baptist South in Montgomery at 5 a.m. Wednesday with gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead a short time later. Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbett told The Alexander City Outlook his department is working with the Montgomery Police Department to determine if Donaldson was at the scene of the Tallassee home invasion. The sheriff said Thursday that Donaldson's possible connection to the home invasion was still under investigation."

Connecticut man fires shot to scare off burglar, both arrested: "Two men were arrested on numerous charges Saturday, police said, after a homeowner fired his shotgun out his window to drive away a would-be burglar. Alan Pelletier, 45, of 95A Main St. in the Broad Brook section was charged with first-degree reckless endangerment, unlawful discharge of firearms, and second-degree breach of peace by threat, police said. Delroy A. Martin, 24, of 794 South St. Suffield, was charged with second-degree assault, criminal mischief, breach of peace, and criminal attempt to commit burglary, police said. Officers responded to a call about 8:15 p.m. Saturday, police said. "It appears Martin was attempting to break into 93 Main St. when shots were fired," Capt. Roger T. Hart said. "It appears Pelletier shot a 12-gauge shotgun out the rear window of 95A Main St., presumably in an attempt to scare away the suspect," according to Hart. No one was injured from the shooting, police said. "When we arrived several people were holding a black male down," Hart said. That man, Martin, was "attempting to break into a residence, using a garden tool to break down the door," according to Hart. Pelletier was released on $10,000 nonsurety bond and is to appear on Jan. 22 at Enfield Superior Court, Hart said."

South Africa: Resident shoots intruder: "An alleged robber was shot and injured by a resident in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday morning, police said. Police spokesperson Captain Debbie O' Brien said the incident took place in Doone Road in Padfield Park near Pinetown at 03:45. The resident heard dogs barking and awoke from his sleep. "He took his firearm and went outside to investigate," said O' Brien. Police said one robber, who was hidden between two cars in the driveway, jumped towards the resident with "something" in his hand. "Fearing for his life, he instinctively fired his weapon," said O' Brien. A second robber jumped over a neighbour's wall, fleeing the scene. Police later arrived at the scene and the injured robber was taken to hospital. Police said the man sustained an entry wound to his head but was in a stable condition. O' Brien said upon investigation, police established that the robbers had broken into the neighbour's wendy house and into a resident's car. "A car radio, screwdriver and a knife were found at the scene," she said. Police said the 20-year-old injured man would appear in court soon facing charges of attempted murder, housebreaking and theft from a motor vehicle."

Gun seized after Katrina? NRA wants you: "The National Rifle Association has hired private investigators to find hundreds of people whose firearms were seized by city police in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, according to court papers filed this week. The NRA is trying to locate gun owners for a federal lawsuit that the lobbying group filed against Mayor Ray Nagin and Police Superintendent Warren Riley over the city's seizure of firearms after the Aug. 29, 2005, hurricane. In the lawsuit, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation claim the city violated gun owners' constitutional right to bear arms and left them "at the mercy of roving gangs, home invaders, and other criminals" after Katrina. The NRA says the city seized more than 1,000 guns that weren't part of any criminal investigation after the hurricane. Police have said they took only guns that had been stolen or found in abandoned homes. NRA lawyer Daniel Holliday said investigators have identified about 300 of the gun owners and located about 75 of them. Some of them could be called to testify during a trial, he added.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

California Man Shoots illegal in Self Defense: "No charges will be filed against a man who shot and killed another man in southeast Fresno on Christmas. Police say it was self defense. Investigators say a 26-year old man showed up at his ex-girlfriend's home on east Belgravia, around 4 a.m. to demand to see their baby. Police say he hit the woman, pulled out a gun and threatened to shoot her. The woman's cousin was in the home and shot the ex-boyfriend. Police say he saved both mother and baby. Police say the suspect had just been released from prison was deported to Mexico, but returned to the U.S.

Georgia Mother Shot, Son Shoots Stepfather: "A Fulton County woman was shot twice in the stomach early Monday morning by her estranged husband, police said. Fulton County police said the woman was being escorted to her car in front of her home on Leisure Lane in south Fulton County by her son when her estranged husband shot her with a shotgun. The woman's son returned fire, shooting his stepfather before calling police, investigators said. Police said the couple was involved in an on-going domestic dispute, with the woman obtaining a restraining order against her estranged husband before the shooting. The woman's son had been walking her to her car in front of her home daily in order to provide protection for her, investigators said. Both the woman and her estranged husband are in serious condition at a local hospital."

British gun crime on the rise as number of armed police falls: "The number of firearms officers working in areas where gun crime is soaring has fallen sharply, figures released reveal. And despite a steep overall rise in firearms-related offences, the total number of weapons-trained officers has dropped. In gun crime 'hotspots' such as Liverpool and Nottingham there are around 40 per cent fewer armed officers. The stark contrast between rising gun crime and falling numbers of armed police was highlighted in statistics released by the Home Office in response to Tory parliamentary questions."

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Pennsylvania convenience store clerk shoots would-be robber: "A convenience store clerk in Ingram shot and seriously wounded a knife-carrying robber this morning. Ingram police Chief John Doherty said the clerk may have fired at the would-be thief inside and then outside the 7-Eleven store at 10 W. Prospect Ave. "He shot the robber several times. I'm not sure how many," Chief Doherty said this afternoon in a telephone interview. But the gunfire began in the store about 4:30 a.m. and then apparently continued outside, Chief Doherty said. He declined to identify either the clerk or the robber. Chief Doherty said the would-be thief is 20 years old and the clerk is in his mid-20s. Emergency crews transported the robber to Allegheny General Hospital, where he underwent surgery, Chief Doherty said. He said the clerk may have had a less serious injury. "I believe the clerk was cut," Chief Doherty said. Chief Doherty said the preliminary investigation showed that the clerk had a permit to carry a firearm. He said he knew this particular clerk because he had been robbed previously and Ingram police investigated the case"

Another shooting in "gun-free" Britain: "A 17-year-old boy is in a critical but stable condition in a south London hospital after being shot in the face. Police were called to Gartons Way, Battersea, at 1800 GMT on Christmas Eve, after reports of a shooting. Scotland Yard's gun crime unit is investigating the attack. Officers believe the victim was shot while he was inside a stationary vehicle. Two suspects, both black males wearing hooded tops, were seen leaving the scene on foot. Police officers, including armed officers, searched the area but made no arrests."

Strict NY gun laws at work over Christmas: "Two teenagers who were fatally shot on a Brooklyn street on Monday were identified by the police Tuesday as the authorities investigated several shootings around the city. The teenagers, Robert Grant, 19, and Oliver Maitland, 16, were each shot in the head in front of a brownstone in the Fort Greene section, the police said. Mr. Maitland was also shot twice in the torso and once in the arm, the police said. The victims were walking east on Lefferts Place at about 9:45 p.m. when they were shot, the police said, just a few doors down from where Mr. Grant lived. They were pronounced dead at the scene. No arrests have been made, and the police said they did not know what had prompted the shooting. On Tuesday morning, four people were shot and wounded outside a Brooklyn nightclub after a man fired into a crowd, the police said. The victims, who were male and ages 16 to 21, were struck in the legs. None suffered life-threatening injuries, the police said, and at least two of the victims walked to hospitals. The shooting occurred outside Club Seabreeze at 556 Nostrand Avenue at 3:45 a.m. No arrests have been made. Also Tuesday, the police identified the victim of a shooting in the Bronx on Monday as Orlando Clarke, 26. Mr. Clarke was shot after he pulled his car into a neighbor’s driveway in the Baychester section and a gunman fired six shots at him through the windshield, the police said. Mr. Clarke was pronounced dead at Jacobi Medical Center. The police have made no arrests."

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Texas Bar Owner Kills Man In Self-Defense: "A southeast Houston bar owner shot and killed a man, police said, in self-defense, KPRC Local 2 reported Monday. Officials said the shooting happened at Henry's Bar on North 80th at Avenue B at about 11 p.m. Sunday. Police said a man walked into a bar and flashed a gun. When the owner asked him to leave, the man went outside. "Outside the bar, there was another confrontation. He pointed the gun and the bar owner shot him and it appears to be self-defense at this time," said Sgt. E. Lorenzana with the Houston Police Department. The man was shot in the head and died in the parking lot. His name was not released. No charges have been filed against the owner.

Georgia Man Shot After Invading Home: "A man ended up in the hospital on this Christmas Eve because of a shooting. The shooting happened just after noon off of Bradley Road in Fort Mitchell in Russell County. The Russell County Sheriff's Department tells News Three, two men entered the home with weapons drawn. The men took off with some items, and then, the homeowner and the men had an altercation. The homeowner shot one of the men. Sheriff's Deputies say the two tried to get away in a stolen vehicle from Columbus but the vehicle was shot at as well. The vehicle was found in a ditch on the homeowner’s property. The men ran to the neighbor's yard, and the neighbor called 9-1-1. “A man called saying there was a black male that had been shot, appeared to be by a shotgun, laying in his yard,” says Lt. Heath Taylor of the Russell County Sheriff’s Department. One of the men is in critical condition at a local hospital. Both men are in custody"

Alabama: Resident shoots, kills home intruder: "A Madison man shot and killed a man who was apparently trying to rob him in his apartment Sunday afternoon. Police are also looking for a woman who was the dead man's accomplice. According to police reports, Paul Crabtree and Mary Elizabeth Holt were apparently armed with knives when they barged into a home at Charleston Oaks Apartments, 222 Kyser Boulevard around 4:10 p.m. The resident shot Crabtree in the upper left chest. HEMSI paramedics took him to Huntsville Hospital where he later died. The woman is 5-foot-8 with blonde hair and brown eyes. She was wearing a pink hoody with a Confederate flag on it."

Monday, December 24, 2007

A good letter

I liked the following letter to the editor on a Kansas website:

With open arms

I am waiting for the day that some business in Wichita puts up a sign that says "Permit-holding concealed-carry customers are welcome. People coming to do harm in this store are warned that our customers may be armed."

That store will get my business even if it isn't selling anything I need.



California: Clerk shoots robber dead, chase closes I-10: "A convenience store robbery-gone-wrong ended with one suspect dead and westbound Interstate 10 traffic backed up for nearly two hours Friday. Three armed suspects entered the Y and M Market in the 1500 block of Second Street in Coachella about 11:30 a.m., according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department. That's when they encountered something they may not have expected. "The store clerk armed himself and shot one of the suspects," Sheriff's Deputy Herlinda Valenzuela said. It wasn't immediately clear what type of weapons the suspects had or how many times the man was shot... The sheriff's department is investigating the incident as a homicide, but the employee has not been charged. The other two suspects fled the scene in a small sport utility vehicle, which may have been a green GMC Jimmy, Valenzuela said. The suspect vehicle collided with another one near Tyler Street and Avenue 50. The second vehicle followed the suspects onto I-10 and confronted them in an area between Cook and Washington streets. Authorities arrived at the scene and shut down all westbound lanes until about 1:45 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol. The two men were arrested on unspecified charges and their names, ages and residences have not been released."

Alabama: Officer killed man in self-defense: "A Tuscaloosa Police officer was acting in self-defense when he shot and killed Jeremy Whitson in October, a grand jury found. The officer, whose name has not been released, shot Whitson after a chase at Ski Lodge Apartments. Grand jury members heard testimony that Whitson punched the officer in the face and threatened to kill him. "Mr. Whitson was much bigger and one of the witnesses also demonstrated that he saw Mr. Whitson on top of the officer on the ground and repeatedly striking him with closed fists," the written report from the grand jury stated. "Other witnesses also described this as a very severe beating of the officer by Mr. Whitson. Due to the beating, the officer felt like he was going to lose consciousness and therefore he was at risk of having his gun taken from him and used to shoot him." Lukata Mjumbe, pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church, who has acted as a spokesman for Whitson's family, said that he and the family were disappointed and disturbed by the report, but not surprised. Mjumbe said he heard witness statements that didn't show up in the grand jury report. "There is so much left out that wasn't considered in making this particular judgment. They found it necessary to talk about [Whitson's] writ for a child abuse charge and said he'd been smoking marijuana, but there's no information about the officer's record"

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Texas confrontation ends in fatal shooting: "Police said a disagreement between two men in a local bar transitioned to angry text messages after the bar closed, then escalated to a physical confrontation that resulted in gunfire at an apartment. Conroe police said 25-year-old Austin Revel Cargill allegedly shot and killed Jordan Robert Eakins, 26, around 2:45 a.m. at Cargill's residence in the Forest Creek Apartments off of North Loop 336. Conroe Police Sgt. Bob Berry said Cargill was answering questions, but no charges have been filed. "Once we received his statement, compared it with the evidence at the scene and presented the case to the District Attorney's intake division, it was concluded that there would be no arrest at this time," Berry said. "So far, the information we have is consistent and reasonable to believe in this case the complainant (Cargill) acted within the scope of the law." Eakins allegedly went to Cargill's residence and "began causing a disturbance at the front door of his apartment," which Berry said was confirmed by witnesses as well as the first 9-1-1 call made by Cargill.... Berry said Cargill went back inside and warned Eakins not to come inside, saying he had a gun. "Eakins allegedly lunged at Cargill through the open door and began to assault Cargill, causing both subjects to land on the floor," Berry said. "Cargill was still holding the weapon and was able to shoot the victim in the torso." Cargill fired seven shots into Eakins with his Smith and Wesson .22-caliber semiautomatic pistol, Berry said."

Colorado liquor-store owner won't be charged in shooting: "No charges will be filed against a Colorado Springs liquor store owner who shot and killed an armed robber, prosecutors said Monday. Charles Kellogg was within his rights under Colorado law to shoot Gibran Gayton, 21, 4th Judicial District Attorney John Newsome said. The shooting happened Nov. 27 at Kellogg's Jet-Way Liquors, 1645 Jet Wing Drive. Gayton, whom Colorado Springs police named a suspect in a string of armed robberies dating back to at least Nov. 20, went into the store just before 5 p.m. Nov. 27. He pulled out a semiautomatic weapon and demanded money, according to a news release from Newsome's office. Kellogg reached under the counter, got his handgun and shot Gayton once in the chest, the release states. Gayton was pronounced dead at a hospital less than an hour later. Gayton's gun had a bullet in the chamber and more rounds in the magazine, the release states."

Colorado woman shoots, kills man: "A Colorado Springs woman had a restraining order against a man she shot and killed Monday morning at her east-side home, police spokesman Lt. Skip Arms said. Lisa Jean Hinkle, 52, shot Kyle Levi Haner, 27, once in the chest with a handgun shortly after 9 a.m. at 1222 Lewis Lane near Galley Road and Powers Boulevard, police said. Immediately after the shooting, Hinkle called 911 to report shooting a man in self-defense, according to police. Court records and police reports reveal a rocky two-year relationship between Hinkle and Haner.... Hinkle applied for and received a temporary restraining order against Haner and they had been scheduled to appear in court about a halfhour before the fatal shooting Monday for a hearing on a permanent restraining order."

My apologies for being a bit slow at getting up the two post immediately above. I give myself such a workload that I do get behind at times. Mike Pechar has just agreed to blog occasionally here so that should increase the variety of the posts. Mike has just put up on his own blog a post about Huckabee that gave me a belly-laugh

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Oklahoma robbers shot at: "A man was shot in the leg Thursday after exchanging gunfire with someone who apparently was trying to rob his brother. The man who was shot went to a hospital, but his injury was not life-threatening, Officer Leland Ashley said. The shots were fired just before 11 a.m. after a man who was fixing a flat tire outside his home in the area of 5900 E. 30th St. was approached by two men, one of whom pointed a gun at his back, Ashley said. He started yelling at the men, and his cousin and his brother -- who was armed with a gun -- came outside the house to help him. Shots were exchanged, and the man's brother was shot in the leg, Ashley said. The assailants then ran away. Police are searching for the two men, whose descriptions were not available. They also are continuing to investigate who fired the first shots and how many shots were fired.

U.S. senators attempt to soften park gun rules: "Both of Alaska's U.S. senators have signed a letter asking the Interior Department to repeal federal gun rules for national parks and wildlife refuges, saying that the existing guidelines are "confusing, burdensome and unnecessary." If federal officials agree, the result could be people being able to legally carry loaded guns onto federal lands in Alaska where they're now banned, including much of Denali National Park. The letter was drafted by U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, who asked Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne to change rules that prohibit visitors to most national parks and wildlife refuges from carrying operable, loaded guns. Such changes would "respect the second amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners, while providing a consistent application of state weapons laws across all land ownership boundaries" Crapo said in his letter. The letter was signed by 47 senators, including Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Ted Stevens, both Republicans."

Disarming of the Population and the Tyranny of Gun Control: "There is a war on our freedoms and this includes the right to bear arms. Over the years there has been a mass indoctrination to the evils of guns, which has resulted in the systematic psychological disarmament of the American people. With less armed law-abiding citizens and more gun-free zones, the result has been more helpless victims. It has also demonstrated that we cannot rely on government to protect us from criminals. Most crime we are facing will not be solved by further gun control legislation. Furthermore tyrants like Stalin, Hitler, and Mao all sought to disarm their own citizens in order to control them and ensure their own power. Many genocide victims were deprived of the necessary means to adequately defend themselves. A clear violation of the Second Amendment took place after Hurricane Katrina, when authorities engaged in gun confiscation. In many cases, it was these same guns that kept many individuals, families, and property safe from criminals and thugs when there was no police presence."

Friday, December 21, 2007

North Carolina: Armed clerk turns tables on would-be robber: "A Reidsville area store clerk turned the tables on a would-be robber by pointing a gun at him, the sheriff's office said. Saveng Kaaosanga, 46, who works at the Cornerstone Market outside Reidsville, told the Rockingham County Sheriff's office a man entered the store with his right hand inside his coat as if he had a gun. He was also keeping his face partially covered by pulling his shirt up and holding it with his left hand. He demanded the money, but Kaaosanga refused. Instead, Kaaosanga defended himself by pointing a pistol at the suspect, the sheriff's office said. The pistol misfired as he proceeded to flee the store. He was last seeing climbing into a black, older model Ford truck."

Florida: Black driver shot 2 whites in self-defense: "With one wielding a knife, two men pounded on Hygens Labidou's roofing truck and shouted racial epithets, authorities said. ''N-----, get out of the truck!'' they allegedly snarled, according to a copy of a 911 tape released Tuesday. One of the men, six feet tall and 350 pounds, tried to pull Labidou from the truck. Moments later, Labidou, fearing for his life, pulled out his 9mm semiautomatic gun and fired, wounding the two Cooper City men -- one fatally -- in the middle of a busy Deerfield Beach intersection. Labidou, 49, of Wellington, will not be charged because he acted in self-defense, the Broward Sheriff's Office said. ''These two men approached him with a deadly weapon in an aggressive manner,'' BSO spokesman Mike Jachles said. ``Clearly, he was inside his vehicle, and he was clearly within his right to defend himself.'' Edward Borowsky, 28, died Monday, four days after the shooting. The other man, Steven V. Lonzisero, 43, is under arrest, charged with murder during the commission of a crime. .... The incident happened in the middle of the afternoon as the vehicles were driving north on Powerline Road in Deerfield Beach. Lonzisero and Borowsky were in a white Ford pickup truck, along with Lonzisero's 15-year-old daughter. Labidou, who runs a family-owned roofing company, was driving a flatbed truck. The BSO said Lonzisero and Borowsky were upset with Labidou's driving and began arguing with him. It's not clear where the vehicles were as the drivers were arguing. But the BSO said the verbal sparring turned violent when Lonzisero stopped his truck at the intersection of Green Road and Powerline in front of Labidou's flatbed truck."

Tennessee man shoots and kills fleeing burglar: "A Powell man coming to his grandson's rescue shot and killed a fleeing burglar Saturday, authorities said. Tilvis Coffey, 42, of Knoxville died at the University of Tennessee Medical Center, Knox County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Martha Dooley said. His record shows an "extensive" criminal history, including arrests for theft, aggravated burglary and probation violation, she said. Officers haven't filed any charges against Harry Smith, 58. Smith, who has a gun permit, shot Coffey once in the head with a revolver as Coffey ran from the house at 103 Copeland Road, Dooley said. Coffey didn't have a weapon at the time, she said. Coffey showed up at the house just after noon while Smith's 14-year-old grandson was there alone, Dooley said. "A man came to the door he didn't know," she said. "He called his mother, who told him to hide in the closet." Coffey kicked in two doors and made his way inside, Dooley said. The boy called 911 from the closet. Meanwhile, his mother called Smith, her father. Smith, who lives nearby, headed to the house and confronted Coffey inside, Dooley said. Coffey ran out just as the boy's grandmother stepped out of her car, Dooley said. "Smith told the man to stop or he'd shoot," Dooley said. She said she didn't know how far away Coffey was when Smith fired. The boy and his grandmother weren't hurt, Dooley said."

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Florida: Armed intruder killed by armed resident: "A man was shot to death Tuesday night outside a home on Pheasant Drive after a gun battle with a resident of the home, authorities said. Deputies were called to the home at 43 Pheasant Drive shortly before 7 p.m., Chief Deputy Rick Look said. They found what appeared to be a case of self-defense initiated after the man entered the home "uninvited," Look said. The two residents, a man and woman whose names were not released, told investigators the man entered their home through the unlocked front door. The male resident "grabbed a gun and fired it at the intruder," Look said. The intruder ran out the front door, turned around and fired a gun at the residents, Look said they told investigators. The male resident returned fire, Look said. Investigators aren't sure which shot was the one that killed the man, causing him to fall outside the home. Look said they can't be certain until further investigation but investigators don't think the event was random."

Florida teen shot: "Not long after Niceville resident Harold Crown fired a handgun at three would-be burglars, a teenager turned up at Twin Cities Hospital with a bullet wound to his torso. Coincidence? The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office thinks not. Crown, 64, told authorities someone knocked on his door at about 10 p.m., Tuesday and when he opened it two men wearing hooded sweatshirts and ski masks “rushed in and knocked him down,” a Sheriff’s Office news release said. The 23rd Street resident said a third man followed the first two into the house and began beating and kicking him. “Crown grabbed a .45 caliber handgun from a shelf of a bookcase and a struggle ensued over the gun,” the news release said. The homeowner told deputies he fired once and didn’t hit anything. He fired a second time, the release said, “but wasn’t sure if anyone was struck.” Crown’s assailants fled the scene after the second shot was fired. He went to a neighbor’s house and called 911, the release said. “A short time” after the incident a 19-year-old arrived at Niceville’s Twin Cities Hospital wounded from a gunshot to the torso, the release said. He was treated and transferred to West Florida Hospital. The Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate the aborted robbery, the release said. Spokeswoman Michele Nicholson said charges could be filed against the unidentified teen when he is released from the hospital."

Georgia home invader killed: "Authorities in Baldwin County are investigating an attempted home invasion and robbery today, after a man was shot and killed while trying to rob a family. It happened at a home on Lakemere Lane in the Oaks at Willow Lake subdivision. According to Baldwin County Sheriff Bill Massee, a homeowner went outside last night around 8:30pm and was attacked by two men. The homeowner was shot in the hand and pushed inside his home; he was held at gunpoint, and his wife was held at knife point. Another relative was able to get out of the home and alerted the homeonwner's son, his parents were being attacked and robbed. The son arrived at the home with a gun, and shot and killed 27-year old Alonzo Mosley of Milledgeville. Mosley was pronounced dead at the scene. This remains an ongoing investigation. Sheriff Massee says he does not believe this was a random robbery. No charges will be brought against the victim's son for shooting Mosley. The sheriff says he feels like his actions were justified and necessary, adding "he did exactly what he should have done to protect his family".

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Michigan carjacker shot by apartment security guard: "An armed security guard on patrol at Kings Lane apartments shot and critically wounded a man who allegedly attempted to carjack the guard's personal car Monday night, Burton police reported. In a media release, Detective Shawn Duncanson said a 21-year-old male threatened the guard with a handgun and attempted to take his vehicle at 4400 Kings Lane about 9:38 p.m. on Monday. The security guard, of Michigan Security and Investigations, shot the suspect twice in the torso with a .357 Magnum, Duncanson said. The suspect was reported in critical condition at an area hospital. Duncanson said the incident will be forwarded to the Genesee County prosecutor's office for review. He said he does not expect any charges to be filed against the guard."

Arizona man turns tables on thief, wrestles gun away: "A man turned the tables on a gunman Saturday by wrestling a rifle from him, turning it around and firing. Police said the pistol-grip shotgun either misfired or was empty, and the robber and an accomplice ran off. The incident began about 5 p.m. Saturday on the side of the Ross clothing store building near Power Road and Southern Avenue. The victim was seated in his car when two men in their late teens or early 20s pulled their car alongside and parked. They approached the victim on foot, showed the gun and demanded money. The victim struggled with the man and was able to get the gun from him and fire it. The second thief helped get the gun back and they took some items from the vehicle before fleeing. The robbers' vehicle was described as a dirty white four-door sedan, possibly a Crown Victoria or a Mercury.

Police chief apologizes to Hmong family: "The family involved in a botched high-risk police search of their north Minneapolis home early Sunday said today that Police Chief Tim Dolan has personally apologized to them. Dolan met with members of the Khang family earlier today, said Sia Lo, the family's attorney during a news conference held in the upstairs master bedroom that was riddled by at least two-dozen bullet holes. Family members said the shots came from police. Lo said that Dolan told the family the wrong house was raided and that there was "a breakdown in communication," that led a SWAT team to descend on the home in the 1300 block of Logan Avenue N. On Monday, Dolan met with members of the Hmong community and family elders. His meeting today with homeowner Vang Khang, his wife, Vee Moua, and extended family was considered a positive step in the healing process, Lo said. Police apologized, admitting that they had erred based on bad information from an informant, the alleged victim of a violent crime at the house, believed to be one of the last pieces in a long-term investigation focused on violent gang members.... Khang said he realized the intruders were the police only after his 12-year-old son told him so in Hmong. "Things could've been very tragic," Khang said Tuesday. "Maybe there were spirits watching over us." Lo said the family will be staying with relatives indefinitely. "I think it will be very difficult for the children right now to come back at this time," Lo said." [How would YOU like YOUR home to be riddled with police bullets? It was an utter miracle that nobody was hurt. These "no knock" raids have got to stop. Better to let a few drug dealers get away]

How many more will die in "gun-free" zones? "Police have identified Robert A. Hawkins, 19, as the assailant who killed eight people with a semi-automatic rifle (not an assault rifle) at the Westroads Mall in Omaha Dec. 5. Chalk up eight more deaths to 'gun control.' The shooting was at least the fourth at an American mall or shopping center so far this year, including one in February in Salt Lake City. Once again, the killer chose a 'gun-free' zone. ... If you frequent public buildings or work for an employer who bars you from carrying your otherwise legal self-defense weapon, consider advising your loved ones in writing that -- in the event you should die under circumstances where you could have saved yourself and others with your handgun -- you want the proprietor sued personally. Guns save lives. Since banning guns costs lives, shouldn't the individuals who ban self-defense -- not the victimized taxpayers -- pay the price?"

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Fatal hormones in New Hampshire: "A Newbury man shot and killed his wife after she fired a shotgun blast at him during an argument, police said. Karen Dion, 38, was killed Sunday in her driveway. In a statement, authorities said Dion's husband, Gary Dion, 37, called police around 2:30 p.m. to report shots fired at their home. Arriving officers found Mrs. Dion's body in the driveway. Police say the exchange of gunfire was prompted by a dispute between husband and wife. "After that dispute, Mrs. Dion retrieved a shotgun and fired it at Mr. Dion, who was outside clearing the driveway," said a statement from the attorney general's office and police. "Mr. Dion then retrieved his own firearm and after being confronted by Mrs. Dion, who still had her shotgun, he shot and killed her in the driveway of their home." Dion, who had been using a snowblower, was not injured, said Senior Assistant Attorney General Jeff Strelzin. Dion has not been charged as the investigation continues. He was not armed when police arrived, Strelzin said, and was released Sunday night after questioning."

Texas: Shootout at grocery leaves robber and customer dead: "Detectives said they believe that a man found shot to death in northwest Harris County took part in a botched robbery at a Fiesta grocery store Friday night that left a customer dead. "He fits the basic description," said Sgt. Robert Odom, of the Houston police homicide division. The body of Lisbon Wilkins, 27, was found later that night along the 1200 block of Northville - about 10 miles from the Fiesta supermarket. Police said he had a gunshot wound to the torso. The store's security guard, who was shot in the abdomen, is reportedly in stable condition at Ben Taub. At the Fiesta at Fulton and Patton, two men - one armed with a shotgun and the other with a handgun - entered the store about 9 p.m. on Friday, Odom said. Wearing hoods and ski masks, the gunmen threatened a male employee to try to gain access to the store's courtesy area. The armed security guard was taking a break in the coffee shop near the back of the store when he heard the disturbance and went to investigate, Odom said. When one of the suspects saw the security guard come around the corner, he opened fire, said Odom, noting that the guard's uniform closely resembles an HPD uniform. The gunmen and security guard exchanged gunfire. The gunmen fled in a stolen minivan that crashed several blocks away, in a ditch behind the Irvington Pentecostal Church. Police found blood inside the vehicle, thought to be from the man later found dead, Odom said.

Another Texas robber dies: "In Texas City, an unidentified man entered Jones Grocery in the 600 block of 9th Street North around 8:30 p.m. Friday dressed in black and armed with a shotgun, Texas City Police Department Capt. Brian Goetschius said. An employee outside smoking a cigarette was able to alert store owner Joe Kainer Jr. before being ordered away by the gunman, Goetschius said. The gunman entered the store and demanded money at Kainer's back counter, police said. After putting the cash in a bag, he demanded more money from the front register. At the front counter, Kainer was able to pull his gun out, police said. "As (the gunman) was opening the door to leave, which is within arm's length of the counter, still in possession of the shotgun and money, he was shot," Goetschius said. The robber was pronounced dead on the scene. "We believe (Kainer) acted within his rights under the laws of the state of Texas," Goetschius said."

Realism encroaching: When Doug VanderWoude does his Christmas shopping, he's packing more than money. Not far from his wallet is his gun. It is his way of protecting himself and others from the kind of violence that happened in an Omaha mall last week, when a gunman opened fire on employees and shoppers. The 19-year-old man killed eight people before turning the gun on himself. "The way I look at a firearm, it's my safety device. I wear a safety belt when I drive because you never know if an accident will happen. I wear a gun in case a crime happens," said VanderWoude, 42, co-owner of a Wyoming gun shop. Last week's tragedy prompted Michigan native Ted Nugent -- known as much for his gun-rights stance as his rock music -- to write an essay that appeared in a Detroit paper this week. He called on the government to get rid of "gun-free zones" and for law-abiding citizens to "get a gun, learn to use it and to do the right thing."

Monday, December 17, 2007

Florida: Nursing Home Security Guard Shoots Armed Man: "A security guard shot a man in the parking lot of a St. Petersburg nursing home after the man retrieved a gun from his vehicle. Jacob Michaels, 33, drove his girlfriend and friend to their workplace, Bons Secours Maria Manor Nursing Home, 10300 4th St. N., around 11:30 p.m. Saturday so the friend could retrieve her car. Michaels waited in the car, according to a St. Petersburg Police press release. While he waited, he was approached by Richard Dunn, 41, the nursing home security guard. Michaels, who isn't an employee of the home, became angry and the pair argued. That's when Michaels retrieved a gun from his car and Dunn shot him, twice. The wounds are not life threatening, according to police. Charges haven't been filed since the shooting appears justified, the press release stated. The case is being reviewed by homicide detectives."

North Carolina: Store worker returns fire during attempted robbery: "A store worker returned fire after someone fired shots during an attempted robbery Saturday night, police said. The employee, who was not identified, was closing Andy's Pantry at 1301 Grove St. and was walking to his car when someone approached him from the south side of the business, according to Greensboro police. The employee told police the man opened fire at him with a handgun. The worker returned fire with his own handgun. The man then ran away. Police described him as black, 20 to 25 years old, medium to dark skin, and 5 feet 5 to 5 feet 7 inches tall. He had a slender build and was wearing a black bomber jacket with orange lining and a fur collar, black jeans and a black T-shirt. He had white Nike Air Force One tennis shoes. The employee was not injured. It's unknown whether the would-be robber was injured, police said."

Shooting at New Life Church: "A coment on a previous thread noted that the person whose shots stopped the mass killer at New Life Church was actually a church member with a CCW permit, not a hired guard, and that the media is spinning the story so as to make it appear she was the latter. I did a bit of checking, and that appears to be the case. This story from CNS news reports: "Many people are expressing relief that a volunteer security guard used her own gun to stop a man on a shooting spree Sunday. "She probably saved over 100 lives," the Brady Boyd, the pastor of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs, said on Monday. The female guard, a church member dressed in plain clothes, killed the gunman after he opened fire at the mega-church." UPDATE: Ahab has confirmed the lady who brought down the killer was not a church employee, and was carrying her personal gun. But the AP coverage describes her as "a member of the church's armed security staff" and "the security guard."

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Gun Control's Twisted Outcome

Restricting firearms has helped make England more crime-ridden than the U.S. The excerpts below are from five years back but nothing seems to have changed

On a June evening two years ago, Dan Rather made many stiff British upper lips quiver by reporting that England had a crime problem and that, apart from murder, "theirs is worse than ours." The response was swift and sharp. "Have a Nice Daydream," The Mirror, a London daily, shot back, reporting: "Britain reacted with fury and disbelief last night to claims by American newsmen that crime and violence are worse here than in the US." But sandwiched between the article's battery of official denials -- "totally misleading," "a huge over-simplification," "astounding and outrageous" -- and a compilation of lurid crimes from "the wild west culture on the other side of the Atlantic where every other car is carrying a gun," The Mirror conceded that the CBS anchorman was correct. Except for murder and rape, it admitted, "Britain has overtaken the US for all major crimes."

In the two years since Dan Rather was so roundly rebuked, violence in England has gotten markedly worse. Over the course of a few days in the summer of 2001, gun-toting men burst into an English court and freed two defendants; a shooting outside a London nightclub left five women and three men wounded; and two men were machine-gunned to death in a residential neighborhood of north London. And on New Year's Day this year a 19-year-old girl walking on a main street in east London was shot in the head by a thief who wanted her mobile phone. London police are now looking to New York City police for advice.

None of this was supposed to happen in the country whose stringent gun laws and 1997 ban on handguns have been hailed as the "gold standard" of gun control. For the better part of a century, British governments have pursued a strategy for domestic safety that a 1992 Economist article characterized as requiring "a restraint on personal liberty that seems, in most civilised countries, essential to the happiness of others," a policy the magazine found at odds with "America's Vigilante Values." The safety of English people has been staked on the thesis that fewer private guns means less crime. The government believes that any weapons in the hands of men and women, however law-abiding, pose a danger, and that disarming them lessens the chance that criminals will get or use weapons....

The illusion that the English government had protected its citizens by disarming them seemed credible because few realized the country had an astonishingly low level of armed crime even before guns were restricted. A government study for the years 1890-92, for example, found only three handgun homicides, an average of one a year, in a population of 30 million. In 1904 there were only four armed robberies in London, then the largest city in the world. A hundred years and many gun laws later, the BBC reported that England's firearms restrictions "seem to have had little impact in the criminal underworld." Guns are virtually outlawed, and, as the old slogan predicted, only outlaws have guns. Worse, they are increasingly ready to use them.

Nearly five centuries of growing civility ended in 1954. Violent crime has been climbing ever since. Last December, London's Evening Standard reported that armed crime, with banned handguns the weapon of choice, was "rocketing." In the two years following the 1997 handgun ban, the use of handguns in crime rose by 40 percent, and the upward trend has continued. From April to November 2001, the number of people robbed at gunpoint in London rose 53 percent....

This sea change in English crime followed a sea change in government policies. Gun regulations have been part of a more general disarmament based on the proposition that people don't need to protect themselves because society will protect them. It also will protect their neighbors: Police advise those who witness a crime to "walk on by" and let the professionals handle it.

This is a reversal of centuries of common law that not only permitted but expected individuals to defend themselves, their families, and their neighbors when other help was not available. It was a legal tradition passed on to Americans. Personal security was ranked first among an individual's rights by William Blackstone, the great 18th-century exponent of the common law. It was a right, he argued, that no government could take away, since no government could protect the individual in his moment of need. A century later Blackstone's illustrious successor, A.V. Dicey, cautioned, "discourage self-help and loyal subjects become the slaves of ruffians."

But modern English governments have put public order ahead of the individual's right to personal safety. First the government clamped down on private possession of guns; then it forbade people to carry any article that might be used for self-defense; finally, the vigor of that self-defense was to be judged by what, in hindsight, seemed "reasonable in the circumstances.".....

During the debate over the Prevention of Crime Act in the House of Commons, a member from Northern Ireland told his colleagues of a woman employed by Parliament who had to cross a lonely heath on her route home and had armed herself with a knitting needle. A month earlier, she had driven off a youth who tried to snatch her handbag by jabbing him "on a tender part of his body." Was it to be an offense to carry a knitting needle? The attorney general assured the M.P. that the woman might be found to have a reasonable excuse but added that the public should be discouraged "from going about with offensive weapons in their pockets; it is the duty of society to protect them."

Another M.P. pointed out that while "society ought to undertake the defense of its members, nevertheless one has to remember that there are many places where society cannot get, or cannot get there in time. On those occasions a man has to defend himself and those whom he is escorting. It is not very much consolation that society will come forward a great deal later, pick up the bits, and punish the violent offender."

In the House of Lords, Lord Saltoun argued: "The object of a weapon was to assist weakness to cope with strength and it is this ability that the bill was framed to destroy. I do not think any government has the right, though they may very well have the power, to deprive people for whom they are responsible of the right to defend themselves." But he added: "Unless there is not only a right but also a fundamental willingness amongst the people to defend themselves, no police force, however large, can do it." ...

The London-based Office of Health Economics, after a careful international study, found that while "one reason often given for the high numbers of murders and manslaughters in the United States is the easy availability of firearms...the strong correlation with racial and socio-economic variables suggests that the underlying determinants of the homicide rate are related to particular cultural factors." [In plain words, America had more blacks] ...

This is a cautionary tale. America's founders, like their English forebears, regarded personal security as first of the three primary rights of mankind. That was the main reason for including a right for individuals to be armed in the U.S. Constitution. Not everyone needs to avail himself or herself of that right. It is a dangerous right. But leaving personal protection to the police is also dangerous.

The English government has effectively abolished the right of Englishmen, confirmed in their 1689 Bill of Rights, to "have arms for their defence," insisting upon a monopoly of force it can succeed in imposing only on law-abiding citizens. It has come perilously close to depriving its people of the ability to protect themselves at all, and the result is a more, not less, dangerous society. Despite the English tendency to decry America's "vigilante values," English policy makers would do well to consider a return to these crucial common law values, which stood them so well in the past.

More here

Utah intruder loses: "A man who broke into a Layton home early Wednesday morning got an unexpected surprise when he got inside. The home intruder had the tables turned on him, but why he broke into the home is a mystery. Police say around 4:30 Wednesday morning, 31-year-old Kurt Wrangler busted through the front door of a Layton home in the block of 1450 West 1150 North. He then tried kicking down the door of an eighteen-year-old girl who was sleeping in her room. With all the commotion, the girl's father woke up, grabbed his gun and confronted Wrangler, holding the man at gun point until police arrived. "There is obviously always a danger if a gun is involved, regardless of who is yielding [it]. However, in your own home, it's perfectly legal to protect yourself," says Sgt. Mark Chatlin of the Layton Police Department. Wrangler was booked in Davis County Jail and is facing charges of criminal mischief, trespassing, and disorderly conduct. Luckily no one was hurt, and police say Wrangler's intentions remain unclear. Nothing was taken from the home, and police say Wrangler seemed disoriented and may suffer from some type of mental illness.

Texas man killed during grocery store robbery: "A would-be robber met the same fate at a Texas City convenience store Friday night as another robber did years ago. The man, armed with what appeared to be a rifle or shotgun, reportedly went into Jones Grocery, 616 Ninth St. N., about 8:40 p.m. Friday. He demanded cash, and the owner complied. However, when the robber grabbed the money and ran, he only made it as far as the door, police said. The store owner had reached under the counter and grabbed his own gun, a clear description of which was not available Friday night. The owner fired three shots, one of which hit the fleeing robber in the head. The man fell, dead. The robber had not been identified Friday night, but police described him as an African-American man in his late 20s or early 30s. The store owner was the same man who shot and killed another robber at Jones Grocery about eight years ago. In that case, an armed man became distracted while robbing the store, and the owner shot him. Texas law does contain a provision allowing a person to shoot someone who is committing a crime on the person's property." [Bravo for Texas!]

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Texas: Burglar Shot, Killed by Homeowner: "A suspected burglar is dead after being shot and killed by a homeowner in southwest Harris County. Deputies say when they arrived at the home early Friday morning, a man's body was found hanging out part of a window. Investigators say the shooting happened around 2 a.m. when the homeowner heard a window break in his home. Police say the homeowner fired three shots at the suspect. Area residents told FOX 26 News several shootings have happened in the area recently. The case will be handed over to homicide detectives".

California: Armed store owner foils robbery: "Two masked gunmen held a North Park liquor store owner's daughter at gunpoint Thursday night but ran off when the owner pointed a gun at them. The robbery try occurred at United Market and Liquor on University Avenue near Hamilton Street shortly before 10 p.m. San Diego police said one of the men walked from the front door to the counter, while the other came in the back door and stepped behind the counter. He raised a handgun to the woman's head and demanded cash. The store owner, sitting by the front door, pulled out his own pistol and aimed it at the robbers, police Sgt. Rich Nemetz said. The masked men ran away without getting any money. Police did not release a detailed description of the robbers."

Kansas intruder shot: "Wichita police are investigating a break-in at an apartment that led to one of the suspects being shot. Two men forced their way into an apartment in the 2700 block of East Ninth Street at about 6 p.m. Thursday, police reported, and began beating up a 26-year-old man who lived there. The victim broke away at some point and fired a shot at the two suspects. One of them, a 24-year-old man, was hit by the bullet and later went to Wesley Medical Center, police said. He was admitted and remains hospitalized today. Police are still looking for the second intruder, a 31-year-old man known by the apartment resident. The incident remains under investigation, police spokesman Gordon Bassham said, but the shooting "may have been self-defense."

Friday, December 14, 2007

FL: Victim shoots, kills home invader: "A man in Orange County grabbed a shotgun and shot and killed one of three home invaders inside his apartment late Sunday, according to police. Investigators said three men burst into a home at the Pine Harbor apartments located near state Road 408 and Rouse Road just after 11:30 p.m. Monday. During the incident, the homeowner fired a shotgun at the men, causing the three men to flee, police said. A man believed to be involved in the incident later arrived at a hospital and died from a gunshot injury, according to investigators."

Kentucky Man Charged After Being Shot: "A Lincoln County man was charged with wanton endangerment after being shot by a man he threatened, Kentucky State Police said yesterday. Jerry Cornett, 48, of Kings Mountain was taken to the Lincoln County Jail after being treated at Fort Logan Hospital in Stanford. He is accused of threatening to kill Randall Taylor and going to Taylor's house on Martins Trail in Stanford shortly before 10:50 p.m. Monday with a gun he fired at the man inside the house. Taylor reportedly fired a shotgun, hitting Cornett in the arm and face. Cornett was arrested at the hospital Tuesday."

Contemplating mass murder in Omaha: ""It's just a sign. They have one painted on the entrance to our local Blockbuster, and there's another on the glass front door of my doctor's office, as well. The notice usually reads 'No Firearms Permitted' or something to that effect, and is often accompanied by a graphic: the outline of a pistol or revolver superimposed by a big red European 'forbidden' symbol. As surely as a baseball cap turned around backwards, it is a sign of unadulterated stupidity at work. It might even be funny, if it weren't responsible for the sudden, violent deaths of eight innocent individuals this week at a shopping mall in Omaha, Nebraska, not to mention countless others in the recent past and many more in the future."

Thursday, December 13, 2007

SCOTUS reverses conviction in drugs-for-gun case: ""The US Supreme Court has reversed the conviction of a Louisiana man who was charged with 'using' a gun during a drug deal after an agent handed the man the gun in a swap for drugs during an undercover sting operation. In a unanimous decision announced Monday, the high court said the federal gun law is designed to prevent criminals from 'using' their own guns during crimes. When federal agents introduce unloaded firearms into an undercover investigation, the suspect should not be held criminally liable for the presence of the gun at the scene of a crime, the court ruled. The Supreme Court's primary authority for its decision was the English language. Writing for the court, Justice David Souter says the government's defense of its reading of the law 'would trump ordinary English. The government may say that a person 'uses' a firearm simply by receiving it in a barter transaction, but no one else would,' Justice Souter writes."

California Woman Who Shot Intruder 3 Times Talks To KNBC: "A female homeowner who shot a male intruder in her back yard in October 2006 spoke to KNBC's Laurel Erickson on Wednesday, one day after a jury found the man guilty of all charges. Nadine Teter shot Michael Lugo twice in the stomach and once in the leg after he broke into her Canyon Country home. Lugo broke the lock on Teter's door and barged in. She fled to the back yard with her gun, according to police. "He was coming at me. He was yelling. I shot him to stop him," Teter said. "He went down. He got back up. Came back at me. I shot him again. I shot him again, and he turned around and jumped back over the fence. (He) disappeared." Teter testified against Lugo and his mother, Cynthia Brandon, who drove the getaway car during the Oct. 18, 2006, attack. Both were convicted Tuesday. While Teter talked to law enforcement that night, Brandon flagged down a deputy heading to Teter. She told him her son was bleeding to death.... Teter said she thinks that every woman should carry a gun. "Never in a million years, did I think I would use (the gun) -- never. And whatever higher power, whatever gave me the strength to pull that trigger ... You're looking at him or me. My life or his life. I was not going to get raped. I was not going to get murdered. There was no way -- and I didn't," Teter said."

The follies of gun control: "When it comes to restricting private individuals' Second Amendment rights, it seems that the world must turn upside down to justify gun control. Criminals need to obey the law, limited human beings need to be present everywhere and respond to anything, inanimate objects need to assume a volition of their own, and parents all of a sudden need to become totally oblivious to what their children are doing. Yes, all of these astounding assumptions are behind the common case for gun control. And, as logic dictates, either the assumptions themselves must be true, or the arguments made on their basis must be discarded as illegitimate."

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Missouri man shoots at invaders: "A Kansas City resident shot at three men who kicked in his front door last night, apparently to commit a home-invasion robbery. A few hours after the crime, a man showed up at a hospital with three gunshot wounds but denied being involved in the failed robbery. The incident occurred about 10:30 p.m. in the 1800 block of Kansas Avenue. Witnesses told police the men broke in, pointed a gun at a woman and asked for the resident by name. The resident peeked out a bedroom door, shot at a suspect at the end of the hallway and chased the men out of the house while shooting. One suspect fired back."

Oklahoma storm victim shoots burglar: "An ice storm victim shot a suspected burglar Tuesday night. It happened in east Tulsa, near 21st Street and 101st East Avenue. Police say the victim was inside his apartment, which had no power, when he heard a window break. The man grabbed a shotgun, and confronted a suspected burglar. He told the suspect to freeze, but the suspect ran off, so the man shot him in the buttocks. The man then held the suspect at gunpoint until police arrived. The suspect was taken to the hospital. Police say it's unlikely that the shooter will be charged with a crime."

California homeowner shoots at armed burglar: "A Bakersfield home-owner shot at an armed burglary suspect, scaring off the would-be crook Monday night. Sheriff officials say the resident has the right to protect himself with deadly use of force. The incident happened in the area of Gosford and Lindsey Roads south of Bakersfield. The home-owner told Eyewitness News his property had been the target of crime and attempted burglaries three times in the last 18 months -- that's why he was ready with a gun. The resident says he spotted the suspect trying to break into a front window of the house he built on the property for his son. They were both at the father's house when they heard the dog bark, and went to investigate. The home-owner then spotted an unfamiliar man in the yard. "As soon as the unfamiliar male saw the home-owner, he raised what appeared to be a handgun toward the home-owner," Sheriff's Sgt. Ed Komin told Eyewitness News. "The home-owner took one shot toward the suspect, and the suspect fled on foot."

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Armed self-defence saves lives: "Two people are shot dead and two others wounded outside a Colorado church. And it would have been more had not a second person also carried a gun, as was her right under the constitution: A gunman in a black trench coat and a high-powered rifle entered the church’s main foyer shortly after 1 p.m. and began shooting, Myers said. The church’s 11 a.m. service had recently ended, and hundreds of people were milling about when the gunman opened fire. Nearby were parents picking up their children from the nursery. Police arrived to find the gunman had been killed by a member of the church’s armed security staff, (Colorado Springs police chief Richard) Myers said. “There was a courageous staff member who probably saved many lives here today,” Myers said."

Kentucky Stepfather Killed in Domestic Dispute: "State police say a woman fatally shot her stepfather during a domestic dispute between the stepfather and her mother. Tina Rogers, 33, retrieved a handgun from inside the house on Fitchburg Road in Estill County and told her stepfather, Eugene Wallace Tipton Jr., to stop hurting her mother, Silvanie Tipton, and allow them to leave, Rogers told state police. She said Eugene Tipton refused to let them leave, threatened to kill her and advanced toward her when she fired multiple shots. Police were called at 2:16 a.m. Saturday. Eugene Tipton was pronounced dead at the scene. No charges had been filed as of last night.

Israeli army seizes guns from endangered West Bank Jews: "The IDF is conducting a large scale operation to confiscate weapons from the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria, according to Channel 10 TV. The purpose of the operation is described as 'putting the settlers' gun permits in order.' The security coordinators of the communities in Samaria have been summoned to a meeting with IDF officers Thursday, and community leaders are convinced that the IDF intends to collect many of the weapons in the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria."

Monday, December 10, 2007

Illinois: Fatal shooting over girlfriend was self-defense: "A Country Club Hills teenager was acting in self-defense when he shot and killed another teen after being punched during a confrontation, a Cook County judge ruled Friday. Dorian Jackson, 19, was not the aggressor and was protecting himself when he fatally shot Quinton Corbett after a dispute over a girl in Ford Heights, said Associate Judge Robert Clifford. Corbett was 18 at the time, and the two teens were quarreling over Corbett's ex-girlfriend and his child's mother, officials said. Clifford's ruling came after three days of testimony. Jackson took the stand Friday, saying that during the confrontation on Oct. 24, 2005, he feared for his life. He said Corbett had confronted him earlier that day at his job, pulled out a gun and threatened his life. When he saw him again that night, Jackson said he was afraid Corbett would shoot him, so he shot first. Corbett was shot four times and died three weeks later. Much of the trial focused on whether he was carrying a gun the day he confronted Jackson. Jackson's attorneys argued that he had been stalked all day by Corbett. Their witnesses said Corbett was known to carry a gun and have a bad temper and had a reputation for violence. Witnesses said on the day of the shooting, Corbett had attacked his ex-girlfriend and beat her for dating Jackson."

Florida Man Turns On Would-Be Robbers, Kills One: "Four robbers get more than they bargain for when they target an elderly Hialeah Gardens man. Police said he shot and killed one of them while he was being attacked. Police said 74-year-old, Jorge Leonton was not aware he was being followed from the bank to his home along Northwest 91st Avenue and 119th Street..... when he arrived home, and got out of his car police said one of the thugs put him in a chokehold position and demanded money he had just withdrawn from the ATM. "He came to me with such great force, he was so violent and started to choke me," said Jorge Leonton. He said he told the robber to let go, Leonton has a conceal weapon permit. "I took out my gun and told him, let me go or I'm going to shoot you, because I have a heart condition," said Leonton. "I can't breath, you can't grab me by the neck, because I'll die, I told him that 3 times." The alleged robber refused to let go and Leonton shot him in a torso. "My vision became blurry and that's when I shot him," said Leonton. The other three crooks drove away. Jorge told CBS4's Shomari Stone he didn't want to shoot him, but he had to because his life was in jeopardy. "It's bad I didn't want to shoot a human being, he is a human being regardless." Paramedics lifted the wounded suspect to Ryder Trauma Center where he later died."

Alabama burglar shot: "A burglary suspect was shot and killed Saturday night during an attempted home invasion just outside Cowarts, and a second suspect is in custody. Houston County Sheriff Andy Hughes said the homeowner dialed 911 at 7:41 p.m. reporting two men had broken into his house, located just east of the intersection of Forrester Road and U.S. 84 East, across the road from Ace Hardware. The homeowner has been identified as Pete T. Webb. "The homeowner was inside the residence," said Houston County Sheriff Andy Hughes. "Two black males burglarized the residence and he confronted both of them. The homeowner had a handgun and he ordered both men to the floor." Hughes said one of the suspects got up from the floor and charged the homeowner. "One shot was fired by the homeowner," Hughes said. The suspects then ran from the house. One was captured by authorities and the other was found lying about 100 yards from the house. He died at the scene in a lot where Grandview Baptist Church is being constructed."

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Ohio burglar shot at: "Springfield Police said a man was arrested Thursday and charged with breaking into a duplex on Thrasher Street for the second time in two weeks. 19-year old James Paul Russell is charged with two counts of burglary. Police said someone who lives in the duplex saw Russell and another man leaving his home and fired a shot at them. No one was hurt. Russell allegedly broke into the duplex after an inmate in the Clark County Jail told him that it was an easy target."

North Carolina store owner shoots youth: "A store owner shot a teenager trying to rob his west Charlotte convenience store this evening, police said. The would-be robber had serious injuries and was taken to Carolinas Medical Center. An alleged accomplice, a teenager whose name and age also were not immediately released, was arrested. He is being questioned by officers tonight, but officers have not said what the teens will be charged with. The shooting happened at about 8 p.m. inside the Bradford Food Mart, near Interstate 85 and Freedom Drive. The teens walked into the store and demanded money, said Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Spokesman Officer Robert Fey. At least one of the teens was armed. So was the store's owner, Fey said. The owner and the suspects exchanged gunfire, and one of the suspects was hit in the stomach. The owner wasn't hit. The teenagers ran out the store's front door and down nearby Saratoga Street, but apparently couldn't make it far and were apprehended by police officers a few hundred yards from the store. Paramedics took one to the hospital, and the other was arrested at the scene. Fey said he wasn't sure why the uninjured teen didn't run."

Indiana Man Injured In Garage Shooting: "A man was injured when he was struck with a bullet during an exchange of gunfire at his garage on Indianapolis' northeast side Saturday morning. Donald Dancy and his wife returned to their home in the 3700 block of North Denny Avenue and found a man in the garage, police said. Dancy fired a shot at the intruder and missed, but the intruder's shot hit him, police said. Dancy was listed in good condition at Methodist Hospital on Saturday evening. Police did not identify a suspect."

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Another 'Gun-Free Zone'

Post below lifted from Taranto. See the original for links

This week saw another horrific massacre by an apparently disturbed teenager, this time at a shopping mall in Omaha, Neb. The 19-year-old gunman took eight lives before killing himself. In a column for, John Lott, an economist and gun-rights advocate, notes that the mall where this happened was, like Virginia Tech, a "gun-free zone":
But despite the massive news coverage, none of the media coverage, at least by 10 a.m. Thursday, mentioned this central fact. . . . Surely, with all the reporters who appear at these crime scenes and seemingly interview virtually everyone there, why didn't one simply mention the signs that ban guns from the premises? Nebraska allows people to carry permitted concealed handguns, but it allows property owners, such as the Westroads Mall, to post signs banning permit holders from legally carrying guns on their property.

Lott notes that at another "gun-free zone," the Trolley Square Mall in Utah, an off-duty policeman who happened to have violated the ban stopped another shooting in progress in February. But "gun control" is a liberal and media shibboleth, so the vulnerability of these "gun-free zones" to gunmen who ignore the prohibition gets ignored.

Of course there are trade-offs here. Obviously there would be no shootings in shopping malls if they really were gun-free zones--that is, if they installed metal detectors at all entrances to make sure no one violated the ban. But in that event, can there be any doubt we'd hear wails about violations of civil liberties?

Georgia father kills robber: "Ronald Johnson and his family had just returned home from a school recital. After parking in their driveway the family was walking up the front walk at their house on Stardust Circle when three robbers stopped them. Police said one of the men pulled a gun and ordered the family to "Give it up." During the confrontation Johnson pulled his own gun and opened fire, killing one of the robbers. The other men ran off. Police said Johnson was within his rights, defending his family and will not face charges for the shooting. "It was a home invasion, but this time the invasion was on the other foot," said one neighbor. The neighbor says the wounded man died in the family's yard and the other two men fled on foot. That same neighbor told police that she heard her dog attack one of the robbers as he ran through her backyard."

Connecticut homeowner fires on burglars: Two teens are under arrest after breaking into a home in Stratford this morning. Police say the homeowner fired several shots at the boys before they ran off. It all happened around 10 a.m. at a home on Graham Street. Police say the burglars entered through a back window into the garage where they encountered the homeowner. "Our information after the arrest was that it was essentially a burglary. The suspects and the homeowners confronted each other and neither expected each other to be there," explained Capt. Chris Marino of the Stratford PD. The startled homeowner fired shots at the young men but did not hit them. The two burglars then fled on foot but were apprehended a short time later by police. The teens now face burglary charges. Their names will not be released because of their age.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Pennsylvania gangster shot: "Rob Pierce Jr.'s walk through Easton's West Ward for dinner at his fiancee's mother's house Tuesday almost cost him his life. He was mugged by two men, one a self-proclaimed Crips gang member, the other wearing a hooded jacket and carrying a handgun, police said. ''It was like hell,'' Pierce, 27, of Easton said Wednesday night in a brief phone interview. While being told to be quiet and cooperate, he was dragged across the street in the darkness and told he was going to be shot. But in an instant, the hunted became the hunter. Pierce, who carries a handgun for protection, pulled out a .357 revolver and shot Maurice Cook of Easton, who had thrust a .45 handgun into Pierce's back and the side of his head. Cook, 22, who was shot in the abdomen, was taken to St. Luke's Hospital-Fountain Hill, where he underwent surgery and was expected to survive, police said. He and the other mugging suspect, Tyrone Wright, 22, of Newark, N.J., were charged Wednesday with robbery, aggravated assault and conspiracy. Wright told a district judge he was recently freed from a New Jersey prison, where he had been held on a drug charge. Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli said the good guy won in a botched armed robbery. But at a news conference Wednesday, he also cautioned against a return to the vigilante days of the Wild West. He said Pierce violated no law by protecting himself and will face no charges."

Missouri home invader shot in head: "A man suspected in a St. Louis home invasion was critically injured after being shot by a resident of the home, and a police spokesman said the suspect was not expected to survive. Police spokesman Richard Wilkes said the suspect was taken to Barnes-Jewish Hospital and was in very critical condition Thursday morning. His name has not been released. The man was among three who allegedly entered a home Wednesday night with intent to commit robbery, Wilkes said. The man became involved in a struggle with one of the home's occupants. The suspect was shot in the head."

All our attempts to regulate guns come to nothing: "No one can deny that handguns are used in crimes, but it does seem like the media loves to jump on the bandwagon condemning them, while ignoring that many other weapons are used in crimes. A recent print news article displayed an almost life-size photo of a pistol, but I don't recall seeing a photo of a knife accompanying articles on stabbings. It seems like every time a gun is used in a crime, the anti-gun crowd revels in another "I told you so," while conveniently ignoring those times that guns are used to defend oneself and property or that the weapon used in the crime isn't even a firearm. For years I didn't belong to the National Rifle Association because I just didn't feel it necessary that people could own some of the fancy stuff available for purchase. Actually, I still don't, but I've come to realize that every little chip in the right to bear arms weakens that right and other rights for all of us.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

North Carolina: Neighbor defended with gun: "According to the 911 call, the man heard his neighbors being attacked, ran outside with a rifle and fired a shot at the suspect. As deputies arrived on scene, the 911 dispatcher wanted to make sure officers didn't confuse the neighbor for the robber. The 911 operator said, "Tell your husband he needs to secure the weapon, meaning, he needs to put it on the kitchen table and he needs to stand at the front door with you with his hands up in the air so when the officers get there so they know he is not a threat." Investigators don't think the neighbor shot the suspect. The suspect is described as a black male between 20 and 30 years old, about five-foot-ten to six feet tall, wearing a brown shirt and camouflaged pants. Investigators say around 10:15 Monday night a masked man broke into a house on Seaview Road off Myrtle Grove Road and attacked the two women who live there with a stun gun. One of the women regained her composure and was able to run to a neighbor for help.

Texas: Teen thieves shot at while burglarizing home: "One teen was shot in the hip and another is on the run after a burglary attempt from a house being renovated. The shooting occurred Tuesday shortly after 1 a.m. in the 200 block of Early Trail. According to police, the contractor had employees staying inside the house after thieves had targeted the home. The employee involved in the shooting told police he heard someone breaking into the home and shot at the pair because he thought they were armed. The injured teen was transported to University Hospital and is expected to be okay. Police say they know the identity of the other burglar and it is just a matter of catching him. Both teens face burglary charges. No charges are expected to file against the employee."

NY: Gun reward hot line under way in city: "The Utica police announced the start of a gun reward program called Stop the Violence. The program's purpose is to establish a gun-reward hot line that encourages community participation in the effort to deter gun violence, police said. Police will give a $500 reward to anyone who provides police with information that leads to the arrest of a person in possession of an illegal firearm."