Thursday, July 31, 2008

CA: First suspect, then victim: shooting said self-defense: In a span of two days, Brett Nichols went from being accused of attempted murder to becoming the victim in the same incident. The 48-year-old Phillips Ranch resident was arrested Monday morning on suspicion of attempted murder. Police said he had shot a man and dumped the body in the hills near his home. But Nichols was released from jail Wednesday afternoon after police determined he was acting in self-defense when he shot David Rotela, a 22-year-old Rosemead resident who survived the ordeal, authorities said. "It was a dumb move for me to do that, to dump his body, but I didn't know what to do," said Nichols outside his Edgebrook Drive home. Sgt. Robert Baker said "The (Los Angeles County district attorney) declined to prosecute for that incident." "Nichols is no longer a suspect," Baker said. According to Nichols, the shooting evolved from a home invasion robbery about 1:30 a.m. Monday. Five people live in the house owned by Nichols, who said he was waiting for his girlfriend to come home when he heard a commotion in a bedroom. He armed himself with a gun, "just in case something got out of hand," and went to find the source of the noise, Nichols said. Nichols said he discovered a man holding a shotgun and wearing a ski mask who ordered him and three other residents to lie under a mattress. Rotela and a second man took cell phones, cameras and car keys from the residents. As the men left the room, Nichols followed them. When Rotela got to the front door, he swung around and pointed his shotgun at Nichols. Nichols fired at Rotela who then fell back onto the front walkway while the second man escaped with the stolen goods, authorities said."

Arkansas: Burglar shot while choking homeowner: "Chris Hooten, 34, of Greers Ferry, is recovering from a gunshot wound to his abdomen after a scuffle around 10:15 p.m. Friday. He reportedly entered a home without permission, fought and choked the homeowner, and was shot in the process. Hooten, and James Gadberry, 26, of Greers Ferry, reportedly went to the home of Don Brown on Shaw Road earlier in the afternoon Friday and an argument ensued. "Brown was upset over how Hooten and Gadberry reportedly treated a female," said Detective Phil Burnham with the Cleburne County Sheriff's Department. "Brown told them both to leave and they did." Hooten and Gadberry returned to the Brown home just after 10 p.m. "Brown was asleep on the couch when he heard someone beating on the door. He saw the two men outside and told them to leave." According to authorities, Gadberry and Brown said Hooten forced his way into the home, pushing the door open. "Brown fell on top of an iron stove. He got up and the two men continued to harass him. He went back to the couch where he was sleeping and pulled out a pistol." Gadberry reportedly moved toward Brown and was hit on the head. "Hooten jumped on Brown and started choking him. When he felt like he was going to pass out he fired a shot, hitting Hooten in the abdomen." Hooten made his way outside where he passed out. "Gadberry went outside too. Hooten was taken by helicopter to the White County Medical Center in Searcy. He underwent a successful surgery." The two men are being charged with residential burglary and aggravated assault.

Georgia group takes local bans down : "What began a few years ago as an online forum for gun-rights advocates has exploded into the leading group for expanding Georgia's gun laws.Since its incorporation in 2006, Georgia Carry has fired off a steady stream of lawsuits against local gun bans by leaning on a state law that bars any entity but the General Assembly from regulating the carrying and possession of firearms.Georgia Carry appears to be winning the fight against Georgia's restrictions, which it calls the most stringent in the country, according to John Monroe, the group's vice president and attorney.Restrictions on where permitted gun owners can carry weapons in public seem to be on the wane."

Fla. guns at work law upheld by federal judge : "Employees with concealed weapons permits can keep guns locked in their cars at work in Florida, but businesses are allowed to prohibit customers from bringing firearms on their property, a federal judge has ruled.The Florida Chamber of Commerce and the Florida Retail Federation, which challenged the state law that took effect July 1, huddled with their lawyers Tuesday to understand the split decision by U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle in Tallahassee and decide whether they should challenge it.Rick McAllister, president and CEO of the retail federation, said he doesn't believe his organization will appeal."

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Pennsylvania man chases 'exterminators' with knife, gun: "A 78-year-old man used a kitchen knife and a shotgun to chase three men posing as exterminators from his Lowhill Township home, according to police. A man who was 40 to 50 years old, about 5 feet 6 inches tall and 190 pounds with a heavy build and brown hair parted on the side entered the home through an unlocked front door. Upon entering, he advised the 78-year-old male resident he would do a free home extermination. During the conversation, the homeowner noticed two other men rummaging through his residence. Both were between 25 and 27 years old, about 6 feet tall, 180 pounds and had thin builds and dirty blond hair parted on the side. When the homeowner ordered them to leave his house, a fight broke out. While the homeowner struggled with one of the younger males, the older male restrained the homeowner. But the homeowner broke free, grabbed a kitchen knife and ordered all three men out of his house. The older male tried to regain entry. But by then, the homeowner had a shotgun in hand. The three men fled in a green van south on Route 100. They managed to steal about $10 in coins."

Oklahoma Homeowner Guns Down Burglar: "Authorities said a homeowner shot and killed a burglary suspect after a confrontation in a rural Midwest City neighborhood. Oklahoma County Sheriff's spokesman Mark Myers said the resident told deputies he spotted a man breaking into a large shed on his property and confronted him about 2:30 p.m. Thursday. When the suspect got into his car and tried to flee, the homeowner said he stepped in front of the vehicle to prevent the man from leaving. The homeowner said he fired one shot from a shotgun as the suspected burglar lunged toward him in his car. Myers said the man died at the scene. The names of the victim and the shooter were not immediately released"

Mississippi oldster wounds intruder: "An 84-year-old man, who repeatedly held off an alleged intruder Sunday when the man tried to break into his home, finally got a gun in desperation and shot through a door, wounding the intruder in the leg. At the time, the elderly resident was at home with his 74-year-old wife about 5 a.m. at their residence in the area of Adams Street in Bayside Park. Hancock County Sheriff's Investigator Andre Fizer said the couple heard a disturbance as a man tried to break through the front door and also tried to enter through a back door and a rear window of the residence. The resident called 911 and reported that the intruder was trying to force his way into the home, and was threatening to kill him. He held himself against the door to keep the man from entering. "The victim stated that when he became physically tired from holding the door, he became fearful for his and his wife's lives," Fizer said. As he grew weaker trying to hold off the intruder, the resident asked his wife to bring his .45-caliber Colt handgun. He fired one shot through a lower panel of the door. Although meant as a warning shot, the round struck 20-year-old Wade Ledesma of Bay St. Louis in the lower left leg. He was initially taken by American Medical Response to Memorial Hospital at Gulfport, then was transferred to University Hospital in Jackson. Ledesma was listed in fair condition Monday, Fizer said."

South Dakota Man Shoots Mountain Lion: "A late report of a mountain lion that was treed by a rancher's dog and shot near Oral, in far southwestern South Dakota. The incident took place July 17 when Alan Burg was about to start his pickup and go to work. After spotting the lion in a tree near his house, Burg shot it with a rifle. The big cat jumped down and ran into some tall grass. A game warden was called and dogs were used to track the mountain lion. The wounded animal was found about 40 yards from the tree and was shot again. Officials say shooting the cat was justified because of its nearness to the ranch house and the threat to animals and livestock on the ranch."

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Lawsuit filed against new DC gun regulations: “The plaintiff in the Supreme Court case that struck down Washington’s 32-year-old handgun ban filed a new federal lawsuit Monday, alleging the city’s new gun regulations still violate an individual’s right to own a gun for self-defense.Dick Heller and two other plaintiffs argue that the city’s regulations are “highly unusual and unreasonable” in the complaint filed in U.S. District Court. The lawsuit claims the District of Columbia continues to violate the intent of the Supreme Court’s June 26 decision by prohibiting the ownership of most semiautomatic weapons, requiring an “arbitrary” fee to register a firearm and establishing rules that make it all but impossible for residents to keep a gun in the home for immediate self-defense.”

SAF, Smith & Wesson partner on commemorative revolver: "The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) and Smith & Wesson have partnered to create a commemorative revolver designed to recognize the historical significance of the District of Columbia vs. Heller decision and to acknowledge the six original plaintiffs that united to challenge the gun ban in Washington, D.C. As part of the project, an engraved Smith & Wesson Model 442 revolver will be presented to each of the six plaintiffs -- Shelly Parker, Tom Palmer, Gillian St. Lawrence, Tracey Ambeau, George Lyon and Dick Heller -- for their key roles in working to protect the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms."

National Park Service gun ban expanding: "On July 10, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to designate the Washington-Rochambeau Trail, which stretches 600 miles from Rhode Island to Yorktown, Virginia, as a National Historic Trail. Such a designation would place the trail under the jurisdiction of the Department of Interior and the National Park Service, thus subjecting the Washington-Rochambeau to the current NPS gun ban. Carrying firearms on land controlled by the NPS is prohibited, even if the state in which the land is located allows firearms

MI: Marching with guns in Hastings: "Dozens of people banded together in Hastings Thursday night to walk the streets with guns in plain sight.Upwards of 50 people walked up and down the streets of downtown Hastings, most of them carrying holstered pistols.They say it's to celebrate and exercise their God-given right to keep and bear arms, which is also guaranteed in the second amendment.There were plenty of people who turned up for the event to watch the spectacle.Despite some objections, Hastings Police decided not to intervene in anyway because it is legal in Michigan to carry a holstered side arm in public, without a permit, as long as it's visible and the owner obtained the gun legally."

Monday, July 28, 2008

AZ: Man pulls gun, loses it, gets shot: "The news of Matthew John Bentz being shot to death two years ago in Mesa was about five hours old when one of the biggest murder cases in East Valley history went down. A quintuple slaying in the same city meant Bentz's death went largely unnoticed. No one but police was looking for details about Bentz, 40, being shot during an argument and scuffle with Moody Dewitt Clark, then 22. Only two weeks ago, Clark was exonerated when Bentz's death was ruled self-defense by the Maricopa County Attorney's Office... Police reports show that Bentz, James Ladd and Sara Kimble were in a room that Ladd lived in at the Majestic Guest Inn, 1554 W. Main St., on Feb. 20, 2006, when Clark - Kimble's boyfriend - arrived. Kimble told police that Bentz confronted Clark about robbing him of $500 at gunpoint about two weeks earlier. She said Bentz pulled a gun on Clark. Bentz told Clark, "You can either leave with me and we can go out east somewhere, or I could just shoot you now," according to a statement Kimble gave to police. Clark replied: "If you're not going to let me leave, I guess you're just going to have to shoot me." Bentz then pushed Clark onto a couch in the room, according to police reports. Clark jumped up and the two fought. The men struggled for the gun and, according to Kimble, Clark got it and hit Bentz on his head. She said she heard three shots and that Bentz fell after the third shot as Clark ran from the room".

Will Seattle gun ban stand up to legal review? "Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels recently targeted firearms by prohibiting guns on city property, including parks and community centers. His executive order, signed on June 9, directs city departments to develop "a plan to implement a gun-free policy." The mayor cited the May 24 shooting at the Folklife Festival as reason for these measures.... Critics, such as Dave Workman, senior editor for Gun Week magazine, say Mayor Nickels exceeds his authority. Paul Guppy of the Washington Policy Center says the measure will likely prove ineffective: "people who seek to hurt others don't obey gun laws, so adding more laws won't help," he said. Washington state law specifically prohibits local governments from adopting policies that are more restrictive than state law. The Washington Constitution also provides strong protection for gun owners: "The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired...."

Lawmaker wants no guns at airports, cites Ga. law : "The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee says he might pursue new gun restrictions in response to a recently enacted Georgia law that could allow people to carry concealed firearms in parts of the Atlanta airport.Apparently surprised that some airports long have allowed guns in unsecured areas, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said the new Georgia legislation represents a significant hole in national security and a threat to travelers.He asked the [TSA] to clarify federal law governing weapons in areas outside security checkpoints. In a letter Monday to TSA Assistant Secretary Kip Hawley, he said `the committee may seek legislative action to correct this omission' if there are no restrictions."

Fight over open carry gun policy in Texas: "Imagine walking down the street and next to someone with a gun strapped to their hip. It's an image a group of Texans are hoping to turn into reality and they're gaining support by the thousands every day.'This is a basic right,' said former state Legislator, Suzanna Hupp. ..Hupp helped pass the current concealed carry law in the mid 90's.'It wasn't blood and chaos in the streets when we enacted the concealed carry,' said Hupp.Now she wants more.'We should allow people to carry. That means in their pocket, in their purse, on their forehead, on their hip. I don't care how they carry. If they can legally own a gun I think they should be able to carry it in public,' said Hupp."

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Fatal NC shooting may have been self-defense: "The man police have accused of murdering a teenager Thursday night may have fired his gun in self-defense. Edward Lee Harris, 31, was charged with the murder of James Tony Lee, 18, in front of a townhouse complex near St. Augustine's College, police reported. But Sharon Artis, a spokeswoman with the state medical examiner's office, said Friday that a preliminary autopsy report indicated that Lee was involved in a home invasion robbery when he was shot. A second man, Brian Lee Cannady, 19, of 608 Culpepper Road in Raleigh, has also been charged with attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon. A police report listed the victim in the robbery attempt as Edward Lee Harris. Police have accused Cannady of using a handgun to try to take an undisclosed amount of cash from Harris. The warrant also states that Harris' life was "threatened and endangered" during the attempted robbery. Raleigh police spokesman Jim Sughrue declined to discuss the shooting or why Harris had been charged with murder if he was defending himself. Officers arrested Harris on Friday. He also was charged with possession of a firearm by a felon. Harris finished an 11-month sentence for second-degree murder in January 2006, according to state records. Lee and Cannady have lengthy criminal histories"

California: DA rules Barraza shooting was self-defense: "District Attorney Candice Hooper and Sheriff Curtis Hill released a statement Thursday saying no arrests will be made in the October shooting death of Robert A. Barraza during a confrontation on Valaire Drive. The actions of the shooter, referred to as a "victim" throughout the press release, have been ruled as self-defense... The confrontation began Oct. 14 when the shooter - whom authorities never have called a suspect and whose name has been left unreported - heard noises and approached the front of his home, according to the statement. There, he saw an acquaintance involved in a fight with several people who had been attending a party on the same street. He attempted to break up the fight and was shot in the back during this attempt, the statement reads. He then went into his home, retrieved a Glock 9mm and a shotgun, handed the latter off to a friend while instructing him to defend those in the home if anyone entered, and then went out the east side of his home to confront the assailants who had been shooting into the home for the entire time he was inside, according to authorities. The assault had, by then, moved to the east side of the home, and the shooter ordered the assailants to leave his property, the statement reads. At this point, Barraza aggressively approached the shooter, who again ordered him off the property. According to the press release Barraza "responded in a negative manner and appeared to reach into his waist area as if attempting to retrieve a weapon." The shooter fired his weapon once, striking Barraza, who then fled."

IL: Wilmette shoots down '89 handgun ban: "Wilmette village trustees voted Tuesday night to strike the village's 1989 handgun ban from the books in the wake of last month's U.S. Supreme Court decision to overturn a Washington, D.C., ban. Village officials suspended enforcement of the ordinance shortly after the June 26 ruling and said it would probably not withstand legal challenges based on the court's reasoning in the ruling, which said outright gun bans are unconstitutional.The proposed ordinance to repeal the local ban was passed unanimously late Tuesday night."

IL: Chicago continues to enforce gun ban: "Chicago Police will continue to enforce the city's handgun ban and firearm registration laws while lawyers fight the pro-gun lobby in federal court. The National Rifle Association and the Illinois State Rifle Association filed federal lawsuits to shoot down Chicago's gun laws after the U.S. Supreme Court voided the District of Columbia's handgun ban last month.City Corporation Counsel Mara Georges told a City Council committee Thursday that she's prepared to fight those lawsuits all the way to the Supreme Court."Chicago's gun ordinance was not invalidated by the . . . decision. Three prior Supreme Court decisions have found that the Second Amendment does not apply to states and municipalities," Georges said. "The decision did not change that case law."

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Key-fob gunman jailed for 9 years in "gun free" Britain: "A man was jailed for nine years for shooting a fellow clubber with a key-fob gun. Police say that about 100 of the four-inch Bulgarian-made weapons are still believed to be in circulation. Marcus Henry, 27, of Clapham, South London, fired two shots, one of which hit Yaw Darko-Kwakye in the shoulder. It followed a row over the victim's girlfriend in the Departures nightclub in the City of London.

WA: Diners confronted by nut: "Diners at Pacific Grill, an upscale downtown Tacoma restaurant, were confronted by a man who was dining alone Monday evening. According to Tacoma Police, the man sat down and ordered beer, then got up, went into a private dining area and demanded money from the diners. He told them this was a robbery and demanded their wallets. "He comes in the room and says, 'I want your wallet and your cash'," recalled Dr. Charles Weatherbee who was seated with fellow doctors and drug reps. One of the doctors, who had been at target practice earlier, pulled out his gun and ordered the suspect out, saying, "Get out of the restaurant now!" The suspect left and was greeted by police officers outside. Tacoma Police spokesperson Mark Fulghum says the armed doctor acted within the law, defending himself and others during a crime. The suspect is now undergoing a mental evaluation. He faces one robbery charge and several attempted robbery charges."

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."

Personal judgment: "I'm sure some bureaucrat somewhere would have been happy to stick me with a .38 Special revolver (which is that much less gun than 9x19 mm, just less enough not to risk my life on) or a .45 Long Colt or ACP (which I'd have trouble handling with my weak hand). Which is why I'm not real happy about gun control supporters who are now clamoring for 'reasonable regulation' now that Heller is the law of the land. These guys are trying to pretend that safe in some office they can tell me what gun I need at two in the morning making an emergency run to the ATM or 7-11 and that same gun is what an abused woman trying to keep her abuser from coming into her house needs, as does some rancher who has to worry about wild dogs and pumas getting into his livestock."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Texas: Immigrant shot burglar teen: "An illegal immigrant tasked with guarding a convenience store shot and killed a teenager who attempted to burglarize it, Hidalgo County Sheriff Lupe Trevino said Monday. Silvestre Delgadillo, 28, remained on the run and authorities had "no idea" whether he fled to Mexico, Trevino said. Delgadillo, who was convicted in 2005 on a felony drug charge, has been charged with unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, a third-degree felony. But the actual homicide is complicated by Texas' castle law, which allows people to use lethal force to defend themselves and their property. Delgadillo is accused of shooting Roberto Garcia, 17, late Friday night. "He is there to protect his residence - protect the business - under the direction of the owner," Trevino said. He said he will submit the case to the District Attorney's office, which will then present it to a grand jury. The grand jury will determine whether to charge Delgadillo in connection with the homicide. The shooting occurred late Friday or early Saturday, Trevino said, when Garcia and Ramiro Garza and Eloy Santana, both 17, tried to burglarize Valeria's Drive Thru convenience store by breaking through its roof. Delgadillo was living inside the business, though, and had been told by store owner Olivia Lopez, 34, to guard it with a gun she provided, Trevino said. Delgadillo shot Garcia during the burglary, hitting him in the lung and artery, Trevino said. The wound killed Garcia within minutes."

Alaska: Juneau man shoots bear who enters home: "A Juneau man shot and injured a bear who he says had entered his residence. Local police haven't identified him. They say the man shot the bear in the face with a .45 semiautomatic handgun. Officers have been unable to locate the injured bear. Sergeant Chris Burke says the man reported being woken up by a noise in his residence. The man told authorities that when he got out of bed the bear was about four feet into the home. The bear turned and ran back toward the porch. When the man yelled at the bear to encourage it to leave, the bear turned around and lunged and that's when the man shot it. Sergeant Burke says officers tracked a blood trail for the bear, but haven't found it.

California: DA declines charges in fatal Marine shooting: "The San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office elected not to file charges against Issa Wajeel, 50, the Barstow man who was arrested Friday on suspicion of murder in connection with the shooting death of a Camp Pendleton Marine. Michael Fermin, supervising deputy district attorney at the Barstow courthouse, said he received the Barstow Police Department report in the case late in the day on Monday. After reviewing the file with Gary Roth, chief deputy district attorney for the Desert-Mountain region of the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office, they came to the conclusion Tuesday afternoon that Wajeel acted in self-defense when he shot 20-year-old Michael Firkins, Fermin said. Police found Firkins with a gunshot wound to the head in a truck parked in front of Wajeel’s house on July 3. He died in the hospital on July 6, and Wajeel was arrested Friday on suspicion of murder. Wajeel, who was in his yard with a gun when police arrived, told investigators that he had confronted a man who may have been trying to break into his house. Wajeel, a retired Army sergeant first class, worked as a contractor at Fort Irwin and taught administration of justice classes part time at Barstow Community College. As of 6 p.m. Tuesday, West Valley Detention Center still listed Wajeel as an inmate."

Kentucky Man Shot & Killed in Self-Defense: "Police have not filed any charges against a Pulaski County man who they say shot and killed someone in self-defense. Last night, officers were called to a home on West Highway, in Science Hill, to investigate a shooting. They say three people, one armed with wooden club, went to the home to start a fight -- which they did. After a short time, police say the homeowner, Joshua Pyles, got a shotgun and asked the suspects to leave his home and property. They refused and continued to make threats, so Pyles fired one shot. One of the suspects, 34-year-old Jim Goff, was hit. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The two other suspects, Heather Goff, 29, wife of the deceased, and John Strunk, 46, Heaton Ford Road Science Hill, KY were both arrested at the scene and charged with assault 2nd degree. Pyles has not yet been charged in the shooting. The preliminary investigation indicates that Pyles was acting in self-defense in protecting himself and his family."

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Missouri: Neighbor Fights off Would-be Grocery Store Burglars: "Surveillance video shows a bizarre "break-in" at a grocery store in Butler County. Thieves try to cash in fast by taking off with an ATM. The crooks tried using a truck as a battering ram, and brought down the front of the store. But owners say thanks to a quick thinking neighbor, those would-be burglars left empty handed. "I heard this loud, excruciatingly loud bang across the street," Robert Chavez said. That's when he sprang into action. "I got my gun out of my gun cabinet and told my wife to call 911. I walked outside, and fired a shot in the air just to ruffle their feathers," he said. It did. The would-be-burglars sped away and investigator Jim Akers says deputies found the truck abandoned on a county road. Before they left though, Chavez had a scare of his own. "He pulled out and faced me, the truck did. I felt at that point, I'm in imminent danger, and it scared me. I fired a slug through the windshield of his truck, and put one in the grill and passenger side door," Chavez said. The Butler County Sheriff says he believes there were three people in the truck, but investigators have no suspects at this time."

Florida: Home invasion suspect shot, killed by resident; four others arrested: "One of two men who forced their way into a Williston-area home early Wednesday was shot to death by one of the home’s occupants, a shooting that authorities described as self-defense. The second suspected intruder, along with three alleged accomplices, are in jail after an investigation by Marion County sheriff’s deputies of the attempted home invasion robbery. Investigators said the home invasion occurred about 2:30 a.m. at the home Roger Dan Garrison, 49, in the 19000 block of Northwest County Road 335. Two of the suspects, Jonathan Gaal, 19, of Ocala, and Brian Bond, 19, of Summerfield, forced their way inside as three alleged accomplices awaited nearby in a car. According to sheriff’s investigators, Garrison’s brother, Martin Randy Garrison, 54, was asleep on a couch in the living room and had a .25-caliber handgun under the couch. When Gaal pointed a handgun at Martin Garrison, the older man fired three shots at Gaal at point-blank range. Gaal ran out of the home, but collapsed and died in the front yard.... Fisher said that investigators recovered Gaal’s cell phone and answered it when calls came in. That led investigators to the four suspects, who Fisher said cooperated with investigators and gave statements. “They came in believing that they were just part of a burglary,” Fisher said. “They had no idea about the homicide or that Gaal had died.” Gaal was the nephew of Jackie Bellomy Jr., 48, of Williston, who investigators believe helped Gaal and Bond get into the home. Wednesday afternoon, sheriff’s officials arrested Bellomy Jr., Bond, Albert Rodriguez, 21, of Belleview, and Richard Bellomy, 24, of Williston, another nephew, for second-degree murder and armed home invasion.

Ohio: Moving men best would-be robber: "One determined store owner. Eleven bulky employees to back him up. And a nervous would-be robber pointing a gun at them. The result? A very bad attempt at robbery, said Raymond Palma, 37, owner of D& R Moving. The botched robbery Wednesday morning sent the alleged robber to the hospital with two self-inflicted gunshot wounds, no money and a charge of aggravated robbery. “This ought to be on ‘Dumbest Criminals,’ Palma said. “To come into a moving company with men who lift and haul things for a living – 12 guys, five or six bullets. You do the math.” The robber, identified as Ahmad Parker [above], 21, of Roselawn, was in surgery at University Hospital Wednesday evening for gunshot wounds to the leg and arm, Cincinnati police said. Palma said when Parker walked into the business, 465 Elberon Ave., around 9 a.m. and pointed a .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol, demanding everyone empty their pockets, Palma thought he was joking. “Then he said it again and put the gun right to my head and that’s when I knew he’s not kidding anymore,” Palma said. “But you could just tell he was a rookie. He hesitated for a couple seconds and he didn’t know what the heck he was doing, apparently.” The handgun’s safety was still on until Parker noticed it halfway through the robbery, Palma said. He said he waited until Parker turned his head then grabbed the gun. Four employees joined in. During the scuffle, the gun went off several times, striking Parker twice and an employee once."

IL: Wilmette expected to repeal handgun ban: "The village board in north suburban Wilmette Tuesday is expected to repeal the community's handgun ban.The ban has not been enforced since last month's U.s. Supreme court ruling affirming individual gun ownership rights under the Second Amendment.Repeal of the 19-year-old ban is being done quietly, in stark contrast to the intense debate that marked its 1989 passage and subsequent enforcement. No one indicated a desire to speak on the ban when the repeal ordinance was introduced two weeks ago, either from the public or on the board.Village President Chris Canning said he has not heard any impassioned arguments for or against keeping it since the Supreme Court's ruling."

Florida Home Invader Shot and Killed

(Marion County, Florida) A 19-year-old home invader, Jonathan Gaal (pic), was shot and killed early Wednesday morning after he and an accomplice entered a residence occupied by an armed homeowner. Gaal was also armed.

The incident occurred about 2:30 AM.

According to Marion County Sheriff's deputies, the homeowner heard Gaal and his partner enter the house and he immediately he grabbed his weapon and fired. Gaal was hit while the second invader fled.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The benefits of an armed citizenry exhibited in Israel: "A Palestinian resident of Jerusalem last night commandeered a bulldozer and rampaged along the street outside the hotel in which US presidential candidate Barack Obama was due to stay today, in the second such attack in three weeks. The driver was shot dead and up 16 people injured, most suffering from anxiety, in what Israeli police described as a terror attack. Police named the driver as Ghassan Abu Tir, from the East Jerusalem of Umm Tuba. He is a relative of a jailed Hamas MP. The attack appeared to replicate a rampage on July 2, in which three people were killed when another Arab resident set off through a city street in a larger bulldozer, crushing several cars and overturning a bus. Yesterday's incident was over within five minutes. The driver was shot first by an Israeli civilian, then by a border police officer. Several cars were severely damaged along with at least one bus that was struck by the bulldozer."

PA: Would be robber shot,killed: "A would-be robber picked on the wrong victim in Manheim early Tuesday, according to police. Kevin Smith, 19, of Lancaster City was shot twice in the chest and died hours later at a local hospital. The botched holdup occurred just after 5 a.m. when two men followed the operations manager of Power Pro Battery into his office.Police said knowing he was about to be robbed, the manager pulled out his own handgun, turned and fired twice, hitting one of the robbers.The other man got away.Police are now trying to learn who he is and where he might be.Investigators said they believe the manager acted in self-defense."

NJ: Most find gun control outside realm of public health: "Gun regulation is not a public health issue, according to more than 80% of some 2,000 respondents to a MedPage Today poll.When the editors of the New England Journal of Medicine decried the recent Supreme Court decision overturning the District of Columbia's handgun law, they did so claiming the issue is a matter of public health. Now doctors in the trenches have weighed in with their own views.The responses from physicians who are registered members of the site was remarkbly evenly divided. .But for readers as a whole, it was another story - with 83% of the 2,023 respondents saying No. And as a further measure of interest in gun control, there were 36 comments posted with the poll."

NY: Gun owner files lawsuit over seized guns : "An outspoken Long Island gun owner's home was raided by Nassau County detectives, who seized two dozen weapons he lawfully owns just one day after Rep. Carolyn McCarthy's office made a 911 call about him.Freeport resident Gabriel Razzano claims he was targeted in the spring raid for his `unpopular' political beliefs.He's now filed a $5 million federal lawsuit against the Nassau PD and McCarthy, charging they joined forces to strip him of his guns unconstitutionally. .. The flap arose on March 19, when Razzano visited McCarthy's Garden City office to discuss an article about an illegal immigrant ..Razzano's home was raided the next morning."

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

North Carolina teenager fends off would-be robbers: "Two suspects are on the run after a teenager in the house they were robbing turned one of the criminals' guns against them. At about 8:30 a.m. Saturday, police said two robbers broke into Danielle Gardin's home in north Charlotte. "One guy opened up the garage, let the van in and then they started going upstairs," Gardin said. Gardin wasn't home, but her 14-year-old son Dante was. He had locked the door to his room at the top of the stairs, called 911 and hid in the closet. "One of the guys kicked the door in, and then he started going through Dante's stuff," Gardin said. The teenager had armed himself with a pocket knife. And with the stranger in his room distracted, Dante attacked. "That's when he came out of the closet and that's when he stabbed the guy in the stomach," Gardin said. While the two struggled in the room, the robber's gun fell to the floor. Dante picked it up and aimed it at the would-be criminal. The man then took off down the stairs then sped away with his accomplice in the getaway van, damaging part of Gardin's garage in the process. Police said both suspects are black males with dreadlocks. One of the suspects was wearing a long-sleeved black T-shirt and jeans. The other was wearing a blue polo shirt with white stripes."

Florida Burglar Shot: "A homeowner shot a would-be burglar in Southwest Miami-Dade on Sunday, police said. Police said the man shot was one of two thieves who tried to burglarize a house in the 2400 block of 117th Avenue about 2 a.m. He was taken to the hospital, where he was listed in stable condition. The second man apparently got away. Neighbors said the house, which sits on the side of the street nearest the interstate, has been hit by thieves before. Police said two children, ages 5 and 9, were inside the house when the culprits tried to break in. No charges had been filed against the homeowner Sunday."

Texas: No charges filed against man who shot teen: "Police have hot filed charges against a Northeast resident who allegedly shot a man in self-defense. The police department's Drive-by-Shooting Response Team (DSRT) was called to assist with a "shots fired" call at the 9500 block of Iris at about one Saturday morning. Officers discovered a 19-year-old man had been shot in the ankle and forearm at a residence in the area. An investigation revealed the victim went to a party at the residence and engaged in an argument that escalated into a physical confrontation, police officials said. Police said a resident of the home grabbed a handgun and fired several shots at the victim in an attempt to protect his home and family. The victim was transported to Thomason hospital and a further investigation is underway."

Ohio man killed trying to rob home: "An 18-year-old man armed with a BB gun was fatally shot while trying to rob the residents of a Franklinton home yesterday afternoon, police said. Police arrested his two alleged accomplices, one of whom was his brother, and charged them with murder for taking part in a crime that resulted in his death. The resident who fired the fatal shot was released after questioning by police. A Franklin County grand jury will decide whether he acted in self-defense or should be indicted for a crime, police said. Terrance W. Jackson, described by police as a college student from out of state, died at Mount Carmel West hospital at 1:51 p.m., about an hour and 40 minutes after the shooting at 641 W. Chapel St. Police said Jackson was accompanied by his brother Cashius D. Jackson and Cashius' girlfriend, Lucretia D. Fudge, when he attempted to rob Joshua A. LeMaster's home at 12:10 p.m. LeMaster was one of four residents in the home at the time. LeMaster shot Jackson in the chest and arm. Jackson ran across the street and collapsed on the sidewalk, where he was unresponsive when found by police, Sgt. Joan Schlabach said. "He's protecting his family. He's protecting my home," said LeMaster's roommate, who was asleep upstairs when the shots were fired. "It's (expletive) when you can't leave your front door open." LeMaster's girlfriend told police that Terrance Jackson held a gun, later identified as a BB gun, to her head. LeMaster pulled out a real gun and shot him in the living room."

Monday, July 21, 2008

Baikal: the gangsters' gun: "James Andre Smartt-Ford, known as Dre, was standing by the steps to the ice at Streatham rink when a black-clad youth emerged from the crowd, gripping a gun. He fired two shots from close range into his victim's back. Dre fell forward dying, his blood spreading across the ice. The revolver that killed Dre had the words "Made in Russia" imprinted close to the muzzle, and was fitted with a silencer to muffle the shots.... That gun, The Times has discovered, was a Baikal IZH-79 - manufactured in the Russian city of Izhevsk to fire teargas pellets, converted in a Lithuanian workshop to shoot live bullets, smuggled into Britain and sold to the armourer of a South London gang. Three years ago no one had heard of the Baikal. Today it is the gun of choice in gangland Britain. The gangs have not chosen it because of any bling or fear factor. The Baikal is a small, snub, black handgun that looks almost like a toy - the sort of cap-gun with which boys played cops and robbers 30 years ago. Unloaded it weighs just 2lb (0.9kg) and sits easily in the palm of the hand. In gunshops in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, it can be bought for 590 litas - about $280 - but in Britain it changes hands for around $5,000. British criminals are drawn to it for two reasons: it is in plentiful supply and works to reliable and deadly effect.

Guns ruling spurs legal challenges by felons: "Twice convicted of felonies, James Francis Barton Jr. faces charges of violating a federal law barring felons from owning guns after police found seven pistols, three shotguns and five rifles at his home south of Pittsburgh. As a defense, Barton and several other defendants in federal gun cases argue that last month's Supreme Court ruling allows them to keep loaded handguns at home for self-defense."

ID: Gun group tours Boise zoo - armed : "Idaho members of a group that advocates for the right to openly carry handguns in public are turning heads by touring Zoo Boise while packing guns on their hips. Ten members of were allowed into the zoo Saturday after some initial confusion at the entrance about whether it was legal to bring an unconcealed handgun inside."

DC: A new revolver is still out of reach: "District residents in the market for handguns could face a long wait - only one dealer has stepped up so far, and his license isn't active. Charles Sykes Jr. has been selling guns since 1994 to active and retired police officers and security companies out of an unmarked office in Anacostia. But right now his business, CS Exchange, is on hold because he recently changed locations on Good Hope Road SE and his permit needs to be amended. Sykes said the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives told him that it could be 30 to 90 days before his papers are in order again. For now, D.C. residents who want to buy handguns have no legal options." [30-90 days to process a change of address? What a crock!]

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Having Toppled D.C. Ban, Man Registers Revolver

Relishing a moment of triumph after a successful, long-running legal battle to end the District's handgun ban, Dick A. Heller strode into D.C. police headquarters yesterday with an unloaded revolver and began registering the weapon so he can keep it in his Capitol Hill home for self-defense. "It's a great day," declared Heller, 66, a hero to gun rights advocates nationwide for his role in District of Columbia v. Heller, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case decided in his favor last month. Wearing a dark blue necktie adorned with the scales of justice, Heller, a security guard, climbed the steps of the police building on Indiana Avenue NW about 9:15 a.m. with his .22-caliber revolver in a bright red satchel. "Only in America," he said, smiling.

Moments later, at a reception desk set up in the lobby for gun-registration applicants, Heller unzipped the bag for four police officers at the counter and gingerly handed one of them the weapon: a nine-shot Harrington & Richardson "Longhorn" model with a six-inch barrel, designed in the style of an Old West sidearm. Heller said he owned the revolver "way before the ban was implemented" 32 years ago. Although the 1976 law barred new handgun registrations, residents who owned revolvers before the ban were allowed to keep them in their homes, unloaded and either disassembled or fitted with trigger locks. They could not be used legally even for self-defense. Back then, rather than participate in what he considered an unconstitutional process, Heller said, he gave the pistol to a friend in Maryland for safekeeping. So yesterday was a homecoming for the old firearm after more than three decades in storage. "It's one of my favorites," he said of the blue-steel revolver. "It's like the kind Matt Dillon used to use on 'Gunsmoke.' "

Heller was one of six plaintiffs who sued the District in 2006, saying the city's gun control laws violated the Second Amendment. In a 5 to 4 ruling June 26, the Supreme Court held that the Constitution grants individuals the right to own guns for self-defense. Although the majority opinion said that officials may impose reasonable restrictions, it meant the end of the District's handgun ban.

Five of the plaintiffs were dropped from the case for lack of legal standing, leaving Heller as the only named litigant championing gun rights. To libertarians and firearms enthusiasts, he has become an icon, his victory celebrated on T-shirts and bumper stickers.

"My first reaction is we shouldn't have had to be here in the first place," he said when he had finished the registration-application process and the revolver was back in the satchel by his side. But "it's a great feeling to be returning to a state of normalcy when it comes to being able to defend your life in your household."

Yet even as the court ruling forces a shift in policy regarding firearms ownership in the nation's capital, several legal and regulatory obstacles remain for D.C. residents hoping to purchase handguns and keep them loaded.

With few exceptions, it is not yet possible for a Washingtonian to legally obtain a handgun because there are no licensed dealers in the city (although officials expect there will be eventually). Federal law bars a dealer in one state from selling a pistol to a resident of another state unless the gun is shipped to a dealer in the buyer's home jurisdiction, where the purchaser can take delivery.

As a result, although dozens of people have picked up registration-application packets, police said, only five residents, including Heller, have begun the registration process since the city began accepting applications Thursday. The process is open to gun owners who stored their firearms outside the city while the ban was in effect and to residents who illegally kept revolvers in their homes during the ban and want to register them under an amnesty program. Of the five applicants so far, police said, only Heller brought in a legal gun from outside the District. The others sought to register revolvers under the amnesty program. Three of those applications are pending. The other was rejected and the gun was confiscated because the applicant had a criminal record, police said.

"It's going to take a while" before the city has a legally well-armed populace, said Dane von Breichenruchardt, president of the Bill of Rights Foundation, a public policy group, as he stood with Heller at police headquarters.

In a statement yesterday, Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) urged city residents not to follow Heller's lead. "Don't buy into the gun culture in our streets by bringing it into our homes with the gun you buy," she said.

Those who eventually opt to arm themselves in the District will face tough restrictions. For example, the city continues to ban most magazine-loaded semiautomatic pistols, the most popular kind of handgun on the market and commonly carried by police officers. Registrations are limited almost entirely to revolvers, which must be kept unloaded and disabled unless the owner is in reasonable fear of being imminently harmed at home by an attacker.

Arguing that the restrictions violate the court ruling, Heller and others predict more litigation if the city does not ease the regulations. In the meantime, another of Heller's handguns -- a Colt M1911 .45-caliber semiautomatic, the U.S. military's standard-issue sidearm for most of the 20th century -- remains in Maryland. For now, he is happy that his .22-caliber Longhorn is back home, although he is barred from using it, even in self-defense, while his registration application is pending.

"We've begun the process of helping the District recognize our constitutional rights," he said outside the police building, after he had been fingerprinted, filled out paperwork and passed a firearms-proficiency test. After a background check, police will notify him whether his registration has been approved. He grinned. "It's been a long battle."



Stephanie Morosi kept a .380-caliber pistol in a pillow on her bed because she was so scared of Jason Truitt. Morosi had been sprucing up her childhood house, sanding and painting the shutters and cleaning the mess left after new tile was put down in the kitchen on the evening of Sept. 14, 2006. Suddenly, Truitt suddenly came through the unlocked front door of 122 Hartford Drive. He wore a gut hook skinning knife on his leather belt. He asked for money - and to move back in with her.

'I can't live with you, you're scaring me,' she told him. The argument escalated and Morosi went to the bathroom to calm herself. Truitt was standing there when she opened the door. 'I just kept screaming for him to leave. That's when he grabbed a knife,' she told The Post and Courier on Friday, nearly a month after prosecutors dismissed a murder charge against her. The steak knife came from her kitchen counter. When she told Truitt she'd call the police if he didn't leave, he called her a 'bitch' and said she wasn't calling anyone.

'I ran for my dear life and I ran as hard as I could,' she said. Morosi ran to the bedroom and around to the far side of the bed. 'He pounced up on that bed,' she said. She remembers thinking, 'This guy's gonna kill me. This guy could kill me with his own hands, as big as he is and as tiny as I am.' 'I've got to get to that gun,' she thought. Morosi grabbed the gun and fired, killing Truitt.

'I don't remember hearing anything. I just remember I had to get him to stop running towards me because he was coming too close. My heart just felt like it was in my throat.' An autopsy showed Morosi shot Truitt three times, in his abdomen, neck and head. She dropped the gun and ran to a neighbor's house to call 911. All I remember is when I called, I got kind of dizzy. I got kind of like a red haze over my eyes,' she said. The neighbor covered her with a blanket. 'The shock, the blood just drains from your body,' she said.

Morosi, 32 and a wispy 105 pounds, admitted shooting Truitt, a 33-year-old she met at Citadel Mall, but told Berkeley County sheriff's detectives that night that she was afraid of the 6-foot-tall, 270-pound man she dated for a brief time and once allowed to live in her house. She never thought she would spend the next 20 months with a murder charge hanging over her head.

Prosecutors announced June 24 that they were dropping the murder charge. Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson said in a statement that the facts indicated that Morosi was in fear for her life when she shot Truitt.

Morosi had purchased a Bersa Thunder .380-caliber pistol in July for protection against Truitt, whose behavior she said had become increasingly erratic and threatening. A Berkeley County Sheriff's office report documents that Morosi admitted in August 2006 that she removed two of Truitt's handguns from the house because she was scared. Her attorney, Paul Thurmond, said Morosi started going to courses for victims of criminal domestic violence and started developing safety plans. She kicked Truitt out days before the shooting, Thurmond said.

Morosi expected to go home after she recounted the timeline for detectives the night of the killing, but she was arrested on a charge of murder and spent the next three months in the Hill-Finklea Detention Center in Moncks Corner.

Morosi had been living in her childhood home. Though it belonged to her father, he was in the process of giving it to her. Morosi's sister came from Virginia and sold the house so Morosi could make her $75,000 bail; she was released in December 2006.

She looked for jobs, but found it difficult to find work because of the notoriety of the murder charge pending against her. At the time Morosi was arrested, her main source of income as an escort became public. She required a 'donation' of $250 an hour to be collected at the beginning of the 'date,' according to her Web posting.

Morosi said Friday that she was looking for a male version of herself on her dates. In a time when people don't get married to have sex or even have children, she sees what she did for a living as no worse or different.

Thurmond said he doubts detectives would have been so quick to arrest Morosi had she been in a different line of work, say, a kindergarten teacher. 'I don't think a reasonable person would say she would receive less scrutiny than the teacher,' Thurmond said of the length of time that passed between Morosi's arrest and the dismissal of the charge.

After her release from jail, Morosi worked for a brief time at the IHOP on Ashley Phosphate Road, but grew nervous when it was twice robbed. She's using what's left from the sale of the house in Ladson to attend Trident Technical College, and hopes to become a nurse. She's living on a friend's sofa and said she's discovered that Goodwill is a great place to shop for bargains.


Saturday, July 19, 2008

Oklahoma burglar shot: "A man told police he was acting in self-defense when he shot and killed another man today in Midwest City, according to an Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office news release. The man shot and killed was has been identified as Mikah Ryan Smith, 34. The shooter's name has not been released. The shooter told deputies he found the victim attempting to break into a shed on the shooter's property, 1701 Hughson Ave., according to the release. The victim then got into a small car, and the shooter told deputies the burglar attempted to ram him, according to the release. The shooter fired into the car's windshield, striking the victim. The victim was taken to a Midwest City hospital where he was pronounced dead."

Shooting of Kentucky teen ruled self-defense: "A grand jury has decided not to indict a Bowling Green man who fatally shot a teenager trying to break into his home. WBKO-TV reports that the grand jury found that 15-year-old Eros Berisaj was shot and killed in April as he attempted to burglarize the home of 52-year-old Jeff McGuire. Warren County Commonwealth Attorney Chris Cohron told the station on Wednesday that the case was dismissed because their evidence matched up with findings from the police investigation. Cohron says the case will be sealed and marked "no true crime" meaning McGuire acted in self-defense."

Florida resident shoots burglar during break-in: "St. Pete police say a burglary suspect was shot and killed during a break-in. Investigators says the resident arrived at his home at 1018 22nd Ave. S. at 12:28pm only to be confronted by a masked man armed with a gun. The resident fought with the intruder and during the scuffle, the suspect's gun fell to the floor. That's when detectives say the resident picked up the gun and shot and killed the intruder. The names of the victim and the suspect have not yet been released.

New Jersey: Intruder shot in head by homeowner: "Police say a man who allegedly broke into a Lakewood home and was shot in the head by the owner remains in critical condition. The Ocean County Prosecutor's Office says 31-year-old Eric Tucker of Lakewood was shot by an elderly man who confronted him when he broke in through a kitchen window around 5 a.m. Friday. Police have not released the homeowner's name, but say the gun used in the shooting was registered to him and that he called 911 to report the incident. Two other men have been arrested and charged with burglary in connection with the break-in."

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mississippi Burglar Shot: "One man is hospitalized after being shot during a home burglary. It happened just after 12 o'clock at the Elton Park Apartments on Elton Road in south Jackson. Police say a tenant of building eleven came home to find his apartment door kicked in. The man then approached his home and yelled for anyone inside to come out. Authorities say when three men ran out of the apartment, the resident started firing shots. The suspected burglars escaped through a hole in a fence surrounding the complex. Police later found one of the culprits hiding in a nearby culvert with two gunshot wounds. Paramedics transported him to UMC but the other two suspects got away. Commander Jeremiah Jones says officers happened to be in the right place at the right time - "The ironic part about it is the same time this was occuring we were doing a sting operation on the other side on Raymond Road, another house burglary suspect that had been breaking into houses attempted to sell things." At this time, the resident has not been charged in connection with the shooting."

Indiana man too slow to shoot: "A Franklin man shot in his garage by an intruder Wednesday night remained at Methodist Hospital today, but Franklin police said the man was believed likely to make a full recovery. James Duncan, 28, encountered the intruder shortly after 10 p.m. Wednesday after he went to investigate a sound in his garage. Duncan lives in the 500 block of Hanna Place in the Canary Creek neighborhood. After advising his wife to call 911, Duncan took a .22-caliber bolt-action rifle from his home before confronting the intruder. In an ensuing struggle, the intruder grabbed the gun from Duncan and shot him in the shoulder. The suspect then dropped the gun and fled. "I'd just like to know who did it, and that's what we're working on," said Det. Chris Tennell of the Franklin Police Department. Police said the man was wearing a T-shirt worn by carnival workers at the Johnson County Fair, which is being held this week in Franklin. But Tennell emphasized that they do not know whether the suspect has any connection to the fair."

DC: Heller's handgun permit application denied: "District residents can start registering their guns today. But at least one very high profile application was already rejected. Dick Heller is the man who brought the lawsuit against the District's 32-year-old ban on handguns. He was among the first in line Thursday morning to apply for a handgun permit. But when he tried to register his semi-automatic weapon, he says he was rejected. He says his gun has seven bullet clip. Heller says the City Council legislation allows weapons with fewer than eleven bullets in the clip. A spokesman for the DC Police says the gun was a bottom-loading weapon, and according to their interpretation, all bottom-loading guns are outlawed because they are grouped with machine guns."

Guns are not right wing, guns are patriotic: "There is a big difference between being Conservative and being Patriotic. Elephants and Donkeys can agree on many, many questions on how we run our country, come to the same conclusions and get a lot of business done. And a lot of Conservatives can drop the ball and refuse to see the citizen authority - lethal force connection they should be standing up for. This is one of the biggest complaints of constituents: for all the talk of Independence, the Conservatives won't really take a position on how citizen authority in this country is backed by lethal force in the hands of the citizen first and always. It is this authority backed by force which shall not be infringed."

Thursday, July 17, 2008

South Carolina: Clerk shoots at man trying to rob store: "A clerk at a local convenience store on North Kings Highway shot at a man who tried to rob the store last night, according to Myrtle Beach police officials. The incident happened around 6 p.m. Tuesday when a man walked into the store and demanded money. The clerk pulled out a handgun from under the counter, shot at the man, and missed, said Capt. David Knipes, Myrtle Beach Police's public information officer. The bullet hit a wall, Knipes said. He said the man fled out the door. The case is under investigation."

Maryland burglar shot, killed: "A Park Heights man shot and killed a 45-year-old man who was attempting to burglarize his aunt's home early Wednesday morning, a police spokeswoman said. Police did not release the name of the man who was killed because next of kin had not been notified. They also did not release the name of the shooter Wednesday. Police received a call reporting a shooting at the 3800 block of Hayward Ave. about 1:10 a.m. Wednesday, said police spokeswoman Nicole Monroe. When officers arrived, they were told that a man had broken into a home. A man living in that house heard someone come into the basement, and he went upstairs to get a his .38-caliber handgun, police said. He was the registered owner of the gun, police said. The man, armed with the weapon, went to investigate and heard footsteps upstairs. He called out to his aunt to see whether she was walking around the house, Monroe said. Then he walked up to the first floor and saw the burglar running through the rear door of the kitchen and fired once, striking the burglar in the back, Monroe said. The burglar ran out the back door and collapsed near a shed, Monroe said. The man called 911, put his handgun on the kitchen table and waited for police to arrive. Medics rushed the burglar to Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:05 a.m."

Wyoming man shoots stray dog: "The Park County Sheriff's Office says no charges will be filed against a man who admitted shooting a dog and dumping the remains. Sheriff's officials say the man told them he shot the dog after it was acting aggressively on his property. They say the man was concerned about his daughter's safety. The man didn't know who owned the dog, so he dumped the carcass in a pit. He later found out who the owner was and made an anonymous call to tell her where to find the carcass."

South Carolina man shoots suspected rabid fox: "Phillip Bowers said he believes a fox that lunged at him this morning outside his Marietta home was rabid, though he says he managed to shoot the fox in midair just before it reached him. This morning, Bowers said he went outside and heard a fox clawing at the lattice that stretches across the bottom of the porch of his Marietta home near Hannon Road. The fox emerged from underneath the porch and appeared to be "staggering" and his eyes were "blurry," Bowers said. "He was just skin and bones," he said, "and he had sores all over him." Bowers said the fox growled at him and jumped toward him. Bowers, who had grabbed his 40-gauge shotgun when he heard the noise, said he shot the fox in midair about six feet from him. The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control told Bowers to dispose of the fox himself because it was on private property and had not bitten him. The danger of burying a possibly rabid fox and another animal contracting the disease is small, because a rabies virus dies within about 20 minutes after the animal dies, said Peden Cook, director of the Greenville County health department's general sanitation."

Illinois Police Trading Shotguns for Assault Rifles

(Schaumburg, Illinois) Local police officers will replace their 12-gauge pump-action shotguns with .223-caliber AR-15 assault rifles.

"This provides our officers with increased firearm power," said Sgt. John Nebl, a police spokesman. "[Rifles] are easily accurate for at least up to 100 yards."

Nebl said the shotguns hold four rounds and are accurate to about 50 yards.

The rifles, which hold 30 rounds, will be issued to officers in late summer or early fall, he said.
This upgrade makes sense to me. The rifles are easier to handle and able to match the firepower available to 21st Century criminals and terrorists. To be effective, police should never be outgunned by rapists, murderers, terrorists and thieves.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

How tightly can you regulate a right?

The U.S. Supreme Court may have finally recognized the right to bear arms as protected by the Second Amendment, but the D.C. city government seems determined to put the concept of "constitutionally protected right" to the test. Mayor Fenty's wish-list of proposed regulations are certainly preferable to the outright ban on handguns the city imposed for 32 years, but they seem a bit more restrictive than you'd expect to be permissible for the exercise of a right rather than a privilege. The proposed legislation has four main components:
1. Continues to ban handguns in most places but creates an exception for self-defense in the home. The handgun ban remains in effect, except for use in self-defense within the home. Sawed-off shotguns, machine guns and short-barreled rifles are still prohibited.

2. Requires the Metropolitan Police Department to perform ballistic testing on handguns and makes such testing a registration requirement. The Chief of Police will require ballistics tests of any handgun submitted for registration to determine if it is stolen or has been used in a crime. Also, to serve as many residents as possible, the Chief will limit registrations to one handgun per person for the first 90 days after the legislation becomes law.

3. Clarifies the safe-storage and trigger-lock requirements. The legislation modifies existing law to clarify that firearms in the home must be stored unloaded and either disassembled secured with a trigger lock, gun safe, or similar device. An exception is made for a firearm while it is being used against reasonably perceived threat of immediate harm to a person within a registered gun owner's home. The bill also includes provisions on the transportation of firearms for legal purposes.

4. Clarifies that no carry license is required inside the home. Residents who legally register handguns in the District will not be required to have licenses to carry them inside their own homes.

You mean D.C. residents won't be prosecuted if they take their locked or disassembled pistols from the living room to the bed room? Oh joy! Requirements for actually registering that piece of iron you've been stashing (there's an amnesty provision) or plan to purchase are ... convoluted and detailed. For example:

1. Provisions for registering a handgun purchased for self-defense in a District residence.
a. A District resident who seeks to register a handgun must obtain an application form from MPD's Firearms Registration Section and take it to a firearms dealer for assistance in completing it.

b. The applicant must submit photos, proof of residency and proof of good vision (such as a driver's license or doctor's letter), and pass a written firearms test.

c. If the applicant is successful on the test, s(he) must pay registration fees and submit to fingerprinting. MPD will file one set of fingerprints and submit the other to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for analysis and criminal background check.

d. MPD will notify the applicant whether all registration requirements are satisfied. At that point, the applicant returns to the Firearms Registration Section to complete the process and receive MPD's seal on the application.

e. The applicant takes his or her completed application to a licensed firearm dealer to take delivery of the pistol. If the dealer is outside the District, the dealer transports the pistol to a licensed dealer in the District to complete the transaction.

f. The applicant takes the pistol to the Firearms Registration Section for ballistics testing. When testing is complete, the applicant may retrieve the pistol and take it home.

The proposed rules actually remind me of the current New York City restrictions, which I navigated a decade ago with the help of a hired middleman and a fair amount of money that went to unknown uses (greased palms, I assumed). New York's rules are explicitly designed to discourage gun ownership -- although they just discourage legal gun ownership and leave most folks outside the law. I would expect New York's rules to be challenged in the wake of Heller, with D.C. to follow if it adopts Fenty's scheme.


Georgia: Armed man scares away robber: "A Bainbridge man refused to be robbed when he was accosted around 5 a.m. Saturday morning. The complainant, a resident of Spruce Street, told BPS that he was sitting on his front porch smoking a cigar and drinking a cup of coffee. According to the resident, a man wearing a mask and carrying a large knife approached and demanded that he hand over his wallet. The citizen said he told the masked robber that he had to go inside the house to get the wallet. The homeowner returned, not with his wallet in hand, but instead wielding a pistol, which sent the robber off running. Officer Gary Hines attempted to locate a suspect but was unsuccessful. Georgia is one of several states that does not require people who are attacked or threatened to retreat before using deadly force to protect themselves, other persons or a property"

Tennessee Store Clerk Shoots Teen During Robbery in Memphis: "Police say a Memphis store clerk shot a 17 year-old boy during a robbery. According investigators, it happened around 8:50 p.m., Monday, July 14, 2008, at the Margarita Market in the 6000 block of Knight Arnold Road. Police say the teen and three other men were shoplifting at the store when the clerk confronted them. The four suspects, ages 17, 19, 20, and 28, attacked the clerk during the confrontation, according to investigators. Police say that is when the clerk shot the 17 year-old in the leg. Police say the teen was taken to the hospital in non-critical condition. The store clerk was treated for minor injuries to his face, neck, and arms said police. Detectives say all four suspects are in custody, but no charges have been filed at this time."

Virginia: Potential victims turned tables on robbery suspects: "An armed-robbery suspect was shot by his potential victim Tuesday, the second time in a week where the tables were quickly turned, police said. Just after 3 p.m. Tuesday, a 16-year-old was shot in his upper right leg as he attempted to rob a man at gunpoint in the backyard of a 25th Street home, police spokesman Harold Eley said. The teenager, whose name wasn't released by police because he's a juvenile, survived his injury and was released from a local hospital into police custody. Eley said the juvenile shot at 3:10 p.m. Tuesday was attempting to rob a 31-year-old Virginia Beach man, who pulled out his own gun. The 16-year-old fled after being shot but was picked up by police on 25th Street. After his release from the hospital, the teen was charged with robbery and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. Police also charged him with the July 6 robbery and carjacking of an 18-year-old Newport News man on Aqua Vista Drive. He's being held in the city's juvenile detention center. Eley said the man who shot the teen didn't have a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The gun was seized, but no charges were filed."

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Michigan invaders shot: "Kelly Keating's boyfriend was threatening to come to her house in the 7000 block of Edgar and harm her. Keating, 42, called a friend who had a gun. Around midnight, Keating's boyfriend, Robert Stevens, 44, and his son Zachary, 24, arrived and broke into her house. They ripped an air conditioner out of the window to enter. When the two men got inside, that friend fired a warning shot. But there was a fight, and the elder Stevens was shot multiple times in the leg. The younger Stevens was shot in the chest. He staggered to a neighbor's house where he died. Montcalm County Sheriff Bill Barnwell told 24 Hour News 8 the 9-1-1 call was that people were "trying to get into the house. There were threats being made. We've been there before for situations. There's been some previous domestic situations between the two." Barnwell told 24 Hour News 8 people in the house "were on the phone with 9-1-1 dispatchers when shots rang out." Barnwell said the teen, a young girl and Zachary Stevens' estranged wife were inside the home at the time of the shooting. Deputies are trying to figure out what triggered the argument and led to the shootings. Investigators are questioning the friend with the gun. The county prosecutor will decide if any charges should be filed."

Review: "Four Hundred Years of Gun Control ... Why Isn't It Working?": "The book, 'Four Hundred Years of Gun Control ... Why Isn't It Working?' is the first publication from a new Libertarian and pro-gun publishing company called Contrast Media Press. The publishing company is owned and operated by journalist and long time supporter of the Buckeye Firearms Association, John Longenecker. 'Four Hundred Years of Gun Control ... Why Isn't It Working?' was written by Howard Nemerov, a healthcare researcher who is also a long-time friend of Buckeye Firearms Association. Nemerov used to favor total civilian disarmament, and set out to prove that gun control would make society safer. However, the results of his research had the complete opposite effect."

Second Amendment -- no longer embarrassing: "'The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.' That's the operative clause of the Second Amendment -- nearly erased from the Constitution in 1939 by a muddled and confusing Supreme Court opinion in United States v. Miller. Last week, apparently embarrassed by seven decades without a coherent explanation of the right celebrated during the Framing era as 'the true palladium of liberty,' the court rediscovered the Second Amendment. More than five years after six Washington residents challenged the city's 32-year-old ban on all functional firearms in the home, the court held in District of Columbia v. Heller that the gun ban is unconstitutional. Indeed it is."

New DC rules: "Within weeks, District residents could legally keep handguns in their homes under emergency legislation that goes to the D.C. Council today, as officials try to comply with the Supreme Court ruling rejecting the city's handgun ban. But District officials said yesterday that they are braced for the possibility of more legal wrangling as they try to respect the high court while maintaining the strictest controls possible. Residents could begin applying this week for handgun permits in a process that requires a written examination, proof of residency, good vision and ballistic testing. Applicants also would have to pay a fee and agree to fingerprinting and criminal background checks. The legislation does not lift restrictions on semiautomatic handguns, a move that will probably land the District back in court, according to the lawyer who successfully challenged the gun ban"

Monday, July 14, 2008

Unloading the PC D.C. gun ban

Did it work - the Washington, D.C., gun ban, that is? The Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, struck down the ban, holding that 1) the Second Amendment gives individuals the right to keep and bear arms, and 2) while the government may regulate the boundaries of the Second Amendment, the D.C. ban goes too far. The New York Times, in an editorial condemning the Supreme Court case, says: "Thirty-thousand Americans are killed by guns every year - on the job, walking to school, at the shopping mall. The Supreme Court on Thursday all but ensured that even more Americans will die senselessly." Really?

The 30,000 number includes 17,000 suicides. But a person intent on suicide finds a way - gun or no gun. In Japan, for example, more than twice as many people per capita kill themselves, yet that country bans handguns.

The hand-wringing New York Times editorial fails to ask the following questions: How many Americans use guns to defend themselves? Of that number, how many believe that but for their ability to use their guns in self-defense, they would be dead? "When a robbery victim does not defend himself," former assistant district attorney and firearms expert David Kopel writes, "the robber succeeds 88 percent of the time, and the victim is injured 25 percent of the time. When a victim resists with a gun, the robbery success rate falls to 30 percent, and the victim injury rate falls to 17 percent. No other response to a robbery - from drawing a knife to shouting for help to fleeing - produces such low rates of victim injury and robbery success."

Criminologist and researcher Gary Kleck, using his own commissioned phone surveys and number extrapolation, estimates that 2.5 million Americans use guns for defensive purposes each year. One in six of that number, or 400,000, believe someone would have been dead but for their ability to resort to their defensive use of firearms. Kleck points out that if only one-tenth of the people are right about saving a life, the number of people saved annually by guns would still be 40,000.

The Department of Justice's own National Institute of Justice study entitled "Guns in America: National Survey on Private Ownership and Use of Firearms" estimates that 1.5 million Americans use guns for defensive purposes every year. Although the government's figure estimates a million fewer people defensively using guns, the NIJ calls its figure "directly comparable" to Kleck's, noting, "It is statistically plausible that the difference is due to sampling error." Furthermore, the NIJ reports that half of its respondents who said they used guns defensively also admitted having done so multiple times a year - making the number of estimated uses of self-defense with a gun 4.7 million times annually.

UCLA Professor Emeritus James Q. Wilson, a respected expert on crime, police practices and guns, says: "We know from Census Bureau surveys that something beyond 100,000 uses of guns for self-defense occur every year. We know from smaller surveys of a commercial nature that the number may be as high as 2.5 or 3 million. We don't know what the right number is, but whatever the right number is, it's not a trivial number."

But what of the Washington, D.C., gun ban? In the five years preceding the 1976 ban, the per capita murder rate in Washington, D.C., fell. At the time the law passed, the murder and non-negligent manslaughter rate was 26.8 per 100,000 people. By 1991, the rate rose to 80.6. In 2006, the number stood at 29.1, almost 9 percent higher than the 1976 rate. D.C.'s per capita murder rate remains higher than surrounding states.

A "hot burglary" occurs when the bad guy enters a home knowing it is occupied. The hot burglary rate in the United States is about 10 percent, while the hot burglary rate in the UK - which banned handguns in 1997 - is around 50 percent.

Why not ask the real experts - criminals? The U.S. Department of Justice's National Institute of Justice surveyed 2,000 felons in state prisons. It asked whether "one reason burglars avoid houses when people are at home is that they fear being shot during the crime." Seventy-four percent of the felons said yes. The survey also asked these felons whether they had abandoned at least one crime because they feared the intended suspect might be armed. Thirty-nine percent said they abandoned at least one crime; 8 percent had abandoned such a crime "many" times; 34 percent admitted being "scared off, shot at, wounded or captured by an armed victim"; and nearly 70 percent knew a "colleague" who had abandoned a crime, been scared off, been shot at, wounded or captured by a victim packing heat. So, did the Washington, D.C., gun ban "work"?

As the city's former Mayor Marion Barry once put it, "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country."


Son shoots father. Both survive: "A man who shot his father after the two got into a fight has been cleared of an assault charge against him. The Loveland Police Department's investigation of the shooting, which took place about 11:30 p.m. June 22, found Joshua Valek was defending himself from his father, 42-year-old Joseph Valek, after Joseph Valek had threatened to kill his wife, Tawnya Valek, and his son, a release from the District Attorney's Office said. "In an effort to stop the assault and prevent any further assault on either himself or Tawnya Valek, Joshua Valek armed himself with a handgun," the release said. Police arrested Joshua Valek at the Lincoln Hotel Apartments, 365 N. Lincoln Ave., where he and his parents lived, after he admittted shooting his father once in the neck after the two got into an argument. Joseph Valek was taken to Medical Center of the Rockies in Loveland for treatment for the gunshot, which hit him in the neck and went through his back. He was released Monday. The press release from the district attorney's office said, under Colorado law, a person may "use a degree of force he believes to be reasonably necessary to defend himself" if he believes he's threatened by a person who may assault him unlawfully. After reviewing the case, the District Attorney's Office said Joshua Valek's actions fell in line with that law, meaning they could not successfully prosecute him."

Public comment extended for national parks gun rule change: "The period for public comment on a controversial rule change that would allow loaded guns in national parks has been extended to August 8 after pressure from congressional leaders. . The comment period was scheduled to end on June 30, but the chairs of the Senate and House national park subcommittees sent a letter to the Secretary of the Interior days before the deadline requesting an extension . The letter . stated that `the Department's proposal is ardently opposed by current and former park ranger professionals .' The letter also mentioned that the public needed time to analyze the Supreme Court's decision in support of an individual's right to bear arms against a Washington D.C. gun ban."

NV: ACLU backs gun rights: "The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada has declared its support for an individual's right to bear arms, apparently making it the first state affiliate to buck the national ACLU's position on the Second Amendment. The state board of directors reached the decision following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the Second Amendment protects the rights of individuals to own handguns. The Nevada ACLU respects the individual's right to bear arms subject to constitutionally permissible regulations,' a statement on the organization's Web site said. `The ACLU of Nevada will defend this right as it defends other constitutional rights."

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Utah: Aggressive man shot: "Mays, of Salt Lake City, was shot by George R. Harrison, 59, at Mama's Southern Plantation restaurant, police say. Harrison holds a concealed-weapon permit and works security there part time, but was not on duty. Harrison couldn't be reached for comment Thursday. Police said the confrontation started when Mays yelled at the restaurant patrons. Harrison argued with Mays, who then dropped his backpack and appeared to reach for a weapon in his pants. Harrison "believ[ed] he was going to be shot," a police report states. He pulled out his gun and shot Mays once in the torso, killing him. Harrison was released without being arrested, and Salt Lake police spokesman Jeff Bedard said the district attorney will decide whether to file charges."

AZ: Napolitano vetoes bill affirming RKBA in cars: "Arizonans without state permits will not be able to carry loaded guns under the seats of their cars. Gov. Janet Napolitano on Monday vetoed legislation that would have made cars and trucks the same as someone's home, where you could have a gun anywhere, visible or not. The governor said the measure 'would have added to the level of uncertainty and danger law enforcement officers who make traffic stops already face in the line of duty.' But Rep. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, said existing law already allows people to carry holstered weapons in places not visible to someone outside the car .... He said his measure would just have simplified the law so as not to make criminals out of otherwise law-abiding citizens."

While Bloomberg frets about our guns, NYPD can't keep track of theirs: "Anti-gun New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg should 'mind his own store before telling others how to operate theirs,' said the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, after an audit found that the New York Police Department lost track of dozens of guns in its own storage lockers. 'While this guy has been bullying gun dealers around the country about so-called 'slip-shod' operations,' chuckled CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, 'his own police department seems to be slipping quite a bit on its own.'"

Mindful Musings: "So why am I concerned about the history of the 'V' sign? It's just this. As gunnies, as members of the armed citizenry of the Republic of the united States, we too need a symbol. Something as short, sweet and powerful as the 'v.' Something that can be painted on the side of a building, or across the face of an anti-gun billboard or re-election sign of a gun grabbing politician. Something powerful. Something easy. Something even a bit scary to collectivists with frayed nerves so as to disturb their beauty sleep. Think of it as freedom gang sign."

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Arkansas invader shot: "A Prairie Creek resident shot and killed a neighbor who had kicked in his door Tuesday evening and tried to assault him, police said. Johnny Hawthorne shot Mekin Kantaphone with a handgun once in the head in self-defense inside Hawthorne’s home, Benton County sheriff’s Capt. Mike Sydoriak said. The prosecuting attorney’s office will decide whether the shooting was justified, Sydoriak said. Kantaphone, 34, sent threatening text and voice messages to Hawthorne, 25, earlier in the day, he said. “He was threatening to beat him and kill him,” Sydoriak said. “There was certainly that assumption by the deceased that there was a relationship between the shooter and the deceased’s wife,” said Benton County sheriff’s deputy Doug Gay. “Whether there is any validity to that remains under investigation.” Kantaphone was a weight lifter who was much larger than Hawthorne, Sydoriak said. Kantaphone recently worked as a mechanic for American Airlines. He exercised regularly at World Gym in Bentonville."

DC gun ban lift empowers women: "Citizens in the District of Columbia had plenty of reason to celebrate over July 4th weekend. In addition to our nation's birthday, countless barbeques, and a fabulous fireworks display, citizens of D.C. could finally enjoy their rights as set forth in the Bill of Rights. For more than thirty years, D.C. has robbed its citizens of their Second Amendment rights through a draconian handgun ban. And D.C.'s gun restrictions don't stop at handguns. D.C. also requires shotguns and rifles to be bound by a trigger lock or kept unloaded and disassembled. So much for home protection."

TX: Guns may be allowed at colleges: "Texans might soon be able to pack heat on college campuses. That is just one of several proposals that could reach lawmakers next year as they -- and legislators nationwide -- explore broadening some gun laws. 'It addresses personal protection,' said state Rep. Joe Driver, R-Garland, who heads the House committee that considers gun bills. 'People who do things [like the Virginia Tech shooting] basically know they are walking into a gun-free zone.'"

Meditations on the scripture and our right to defend ourselves: "Throughout history, the builder has frequently also had to defend what they have built against those who do not want the building done. Sometimes it is a spiritual 'building project,' and sometimes it is a physical project with a spiritual aspect. Whether it was the Anasazi defending their cliff dwellings against nomadic raiders, a contractor protecting his equipment and job-site against eco-freak 'monkeywrenchers,' or an inner-city ministry defending their chapel against a street gang, they can all appreciate the situation in the rebuilding of Jerusalem 2500 years ago. Prayer is essential; it is a powerful weapon in the arsenal of the believer. But Nehemiah and his fellow builders in Jerusalem were careful to recognize that faith inspires works. As Nehemiah 4:15 records, they stood watch against their enemies 'with their swords, spears, and bows.'"

Friday, July 11, 2008

Oklahoma: Homeowner fires shots at intruder: "A homeowner shot his gun at an intruder Wednesday night. It happened near 49th and South Newport in midtown Tulsa. Tulsa police tell 2NEWS that the homeowner missed when he fired a shot inside his house. The homeowner then forced the suspect outside, and fired another shot, missing. There was a struggle, and the intruder got the homeowner's gun. When police arrived, officers feared the intruder may fire shots at them. Officers quickly tackled the suspect and took him into custody."

Florida: Woman with .357 blazing chases intruders from home: "Firing a .357-caliber handgun until it was empty, an Ocala woman chased two intruders from her home in the 3800 block of Southeast 68th Street on Wednesday morning. Later Wednesday, Marion County sheriff's detectives had one home invasion suspect in custody and were looking for the second. Aaron Scott Beardsley [above], 25, was charged with armed home invasion robbery. Shortly after 8 a.m. Wednesday, 29-year-old Jennifer Ann Hunley; her 27-year-old boyfriend, Michael Joseph Nash; and Hunley's 11-year-old daughter were inside their home when two men entered through the garage door. Nash, who was coming out of a bathroom at the time, saw one of the intruders holding a nail gun near the television set in the living room. The man demanded money. At the same time Nash saw that the second suspect, armed with a handgun, was also in the living room. The one with the nail gun hit Nash on the head, and when he fell down both men began beating him. Hunley came into the living room, saw what was happening, returned to her bedroom for a .357-caliber handgun and fired a warning shot into the ceiling. The intruder with the nail gun ran outside, while the other one ran into a nearby bedroom. He then pointed his weapon, believed to be a small-caliber handgun, and fired at least one shot at Hunley. Then Hunley, who is 5-foot-3, emptied her handgun, firing four shots at the intruder. The gunman ran out the front door. Neither Hunley nor her daughter were hurt"

Texas: Copper thief shot: "Garland police say they do not plan to file charges against a 25-year-old man who fatally shot a suspected copper thief this morning. The incident happened shortly before 1:20 a.m. at Bargain Town - Variety & Furniture store in the 5700 block of Broadway Boulevard, police said. The business owner's son had been guarding the roof after the store had been recently hit by copper thieves. The son said he confronted a man who had climbed on the roof. The son fired his gun, striking the man in the torso, police said. The man fled, climbing back down the building and collapsing on the ground. The person shot was identified as Edward Preston Hickey [above], 43. According to investigators, he had an extensive criminal record consisting of mostly nonviolent offenses such as theft and public intoxication. Police said Mr. Hickey had a small backpack containing tools that could be used to steal copper. They said Mr. Sheu was cooperating in their investigation. Police said the case would be referred to a grand jury for review, but that such reviews are standard procedure in fatal shootings. They said they had no plans to arrest Mr. Sheu."

Heller Decision Ramps Up Media's Anti-Gun Hysteria: "For years, anti-gunners have claimed that there's a gun-related epidemic in our country, and for once, they're right. It's not gun-related crime though. An epidemic is something that is common and spreading rapidly; gun-related crime has been diminishing for 15 years. What is common and spreading now is a condition one could call "anti-gun anxiety," or AGA. Apparently, it has been brought on by the U. S. Supreme Court ruling in Heller that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear handguns and other arms, and that the right existed before the Constitution was written and is not conditioned on a person's relationship to a militia. Fortunately, this epidemic appears to be almost entirely confined to politicians, newspaper editorial writers, and activists predisposed to the condition by years of bias against guns, gun owners and freedom. Normal people are immune from AGA, thus no vaccine is required, and the only known antidote is an open mind, a willingness to accept the facts, and a respect for the rights of one's fellow citizens."