Concealed Nation

FL School Gunman Should Have Been a Prohibited Person

Details that have been revealed in the aftermath of last week’s horrific Parkland, Florida school shooting have revealed a Keystone Cops-like response to reports of the shooter’s disturbing behavior by the hapless sleuths at the FBI. Despite the gunman’s open declaration of wanting to shoot up a school and a variety of erratic behavior, the Fibbies utterly fumbled the situation.

But long before the gunman was first brought to the attention of the G-Men, before he was expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, he displayed other behavior which, if handled properly at the time, would have prevented him from legally obtaining the the Smith & Wesson AR-15 he used to murder 17 people last week.

He had no criminal record and bought his rifle legally. He jumped through all of the requisite hoops every gun buyer is required to navigate including a federal background check. A background check which turned up nothing.

But he should have been a prohibited person. The New York Times reports that he was expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School for possessing knives on campus:

…..School officials declined to say why Mr. Cruz no longer attended Douglas High School. But Amanda Samaroo, whose daughter, Elizabeth, attended the school while he was a student there, said he had been expelled for bringing knives on campus. “Her friends have said he was known to always be mentally ill and would kill animals,” Ms. Samaroo said….. 

The actual offense committed by the gunman may have been far worse. It’s been reported that he threatened or actually attacked the boyfriend of an ex-girlfriend with a knife. If prosecuted only for the knives on campus, that would have been a third degree felony under Florida Statutes, Chapter 790, Section 115:

790.115 Possessing or discharging weapons or firearms at a school-sponsored event or on school property prohibited; penalties; exceptions.—
(1) A person who exhibits any sword, sword cane, firearm, electric weapon or device, destructive device, or other weapon as defined in s. 790.001(13), including a razor blade, box cutter, or common pocketknife, except as authorized in support of school-sanctioned activities, in the presence of one or more persons in a rude, careless, angry, or threatening manner and not in lawful self-defense, at a school-sponsored event or on the grounds or facilities of any school, school bus, or school bus stop, or within 1,000 feet of the real property that comprises a public or private elementary school, middle school, or secondary school, during school hours or during the time of a sanctioned school activity, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084…… 

But the gunman’s actions were never reported to local police. That’s because the Broward County School district had decided that reducing the number of arrests on their campuses was a priority. The best way to reduce the number of arrests is by never reporting crimes that occur on school property in the first place.

Toward that end, in 2013 they created a “restorative justice” agreement (RJA) to usurp the role of police on all their school grounds.

The Broward County School board teamed up with a group of community partners this month to sign a collaborative agreement on school discipline. The agreement, first of its kind, establishes new guidelines for handling non-violent misdemeanor offenses on school campuses, outlining when law enforcement is necessary and when problems can be handled through school resources.

Representatives from the Broward County-Fort Lauderdale NAACP, Juvenile Judicial Circuit, Public Defender’s office and County Sheriff’s office, among others, signed the agreement with school board members in Fort Lauderdale.

Broward County Superintendent Robert Runcie says the new procedures are a common-sense approach that will give students the benefit of the doubt….. 

Had the school reported the gunman and had he been prosecuted, he would have had a felony criminal record. That record would have prevented him from buying a firearm from an FFL dealer.

But the Broward County School District’s policy of handling even criminal behavior by its students internally kept police from charging the gunman — and no doubt others — with a felony. The BCSD believed that expulsion was an adequate response to criminal conduct, without considering future consequences. The cost of restorative justice turned out to have been unimaginably high.

Now, with seventeen dead bodies resulting from the district’s molly-coddling approach, Superintendent Robert Runcie and Sheriff Scott Israel – both signatories to the RJA – are calling for more gun control, all the while disingenuously ignoring their central role in enabling the purchase of the murder weapon.

John Dingell III contributed to this article.

FL Governor Rick Scott Calls For New Gun Laws In Wake Of School Shooting

FL Governor Rick Scott, a Republican and supporter of the 2nd Amendment, called for new gun regulations after a school in his home state came under attack last week by a mentally ill, former student.

The new proposals are broken down into three sections, and look to make some big changes to the way that firearms are sold, as well as how mentally ill people are identified and approached.

“I disagree with arming teachers,” Scott said. “My focus is on bringing in law enforcement. I think you need to have individuals who are trained, well trained.”

While Scott disagrees with arming teachers, he “instead called for ‘hardening’ school security through multiple measures, including metal detectors, steel doors and posting at schools at least one law-enforcement officer for every 1,000 students by the start of the 2018 school year.”

The first proposal aims to increase the age requirement for purchasing any firearm from 18 to 21 years old. While most states have a 21-year-old requirement for handguns, long guns can be purchased at a lower age. The gunman in the latest school shooting in Florida is 19 years old, and purchased the firearm legally, although he should have been banned from purchasing.

The second proposal looks to make sure that mentally ill people, who are deemed unfit to own a firearm, are unable to purchase or own them. “I want to make it virtually impossible for anyone who has mental issues to use a gun,” Scott said. “I want to make it virtually impossible for anyone who is a danger to themselves or others to use a gun.

The third proposal is designed to ban the sale or purchase of ‘bump stocks’, the same type which was used in the Vegas shooting back in October. outlines exactly what Scott looks to accomplish with his proposals, as many more sub-proposals are included in the above:

  • People under 21 will be banned from buying or possessing firearms, with some exceptions for military and law enforcement.
  • A ban on the sale or purchase of bump stocks.
  • $450 million for a safe schools initiative, which will put a law enforcement officer in every public school — at least one officer for each 1,000 students. He does not believe arming teachers is a solution.
  • Money from this program will also be used to fund “school-hardening” measures such as metal detectors, bulletproof glass, steel doors and upgraded locks.
  • Hiring more mental health counselors for schools.
  • A program called Violent Threat Restraining Order, which provides a method for courts to prevent people with mental illness or who have made threats of violence from purchasing or possessing guns after a family member or law enforcement officer files a sworn request and shows evidence that a person presents a threat of violence and should not have access to guns.
  • Create a “see something, say something” hotline, website and mobile app to report concerns.
  • Mandatory active shooter drills at all schools.

With calls to ban certain firearms, Scott declined to add these requests to his proposals, saying that the banning of firearms would not make a difference and would only hurt the law-abiding citizens.

Armed School Officer Was At FL School During Shooting, Didn’t Enter Building

In an unexpected twist to the terrible school shooting that happened in Parkland, FL last week, reports have come out which tell the story of an armed Deputy on scene. That armed Deputy, a school resources officer specifically assigned to the school that was targeted, did not enter the building in which the shooting was taking place.

The shooting lasted a total of 6 minutes, and the Deputy is reported to have waited outside for at least 4 of those minutes. Security cameras captured his actions during the shooting.

President Trump has since criticized the Deputy for his failure to act, calling him a ‘coward’ who did not have enough ‘courage’ to engage the suspect. reports;

Broward County Deputy Officer Scot Peterson resigned from his post on Thursday after word got out that the 54-year-old had been the only armed deputy on the scene and had done nothing to apprehend Cruz as he killed 17 people. Instead, Peterson waited outside for “upwards of four minutes,” according to Sheriff Scott Israel and video footage capturing the incident.

“I am devastated,” Israel said at a press conference. “Sick to my stomach. He never went in.”

Peterson was the school resources officer at the school since 2009, and was held in high regard by many at the school.

A 2017 performance review shows he was a trusted officer who “takes pride in protecting the students, faculty and staff at his school.”

Regardless of his review, it seems that he failed to act when faced with an active shooter. I am not about to put myself in his shoes, but history shows us that an active shooter who is engaged in a gunfight is likely to end his or her own life. After all, they don’t want bullets flying back in their direction.

But still, these armed officers on campus are there for this exact reason, thus why this particular Deputy is coming under so much fire for his actions during the shooting.

The Deputy did, however, take some action during the incident;

According to the New York Post Peterson reportedly believed he did his duty.  “He believed he did a good job calling in the location, setting up the perimeter and calling in the description,” local police union official, Jim Bell said.

Since learning of Peterson’s actions during the shooting, he was suspended without pay, and ultimately he made the decision to resign and retire after a 30-year career in law enforcement.

It will never be known if anything would have changed if Peterson entered the school and engaged the suspect, but IMO it could have made all the difference. When the active shooter sees a threat to themselves –even if they eliminate that threat– they now have in their minds that an armed response is present and there could be more bullets coming their way. In that event, what would likely happen, is that the active shooter comes to the conclusion that it’s over and takes his own life.

At the very least, it would have directed the active shooter’s attention away from students and faculty, and could have given others the opportunity to get away.

What are your thoughts on this new development?

Reader Question: What’s the Biggest Firearm You’ve Ever Concealed?

There is a plethora of skinny, shiny firearms for purchase for defensive use.

Seriously, if you really feel inclined you can get a moderate-caliber semiautomatic in a nice, comfy holster in your pocket for well under $400. That’s a pretty sweet deal.

Single-stack handguns are becoming more prolific and comfortable by the year, so in the age of tiny-but-mighty — what about the opposite end of the spectrum?

When I first took my concealed carry class, one of the two men teaching the class wanted to demonstrate a point — you can conceal almost any firearm if you’ve got the right holster and take a moment to think about what’s the best fit for you.

He made his point pretty clearly when he pulled 11 handguns off of himself without having to wear a jacket, one of which was a .44 magnum Desert Eagle.

Well, that’s a little much, but it sure made an impression on me.

I’ve never carried a Desert Eagle, but I have carried a few larger firearms.

I’ve carried the Tristar T-120, which is the Turkish clone of the full-size Jericho 941. It was quite a bit smaller, but the full-size 9mm handgun with a 20-round capacity makes for a chunky firearm.

Actually, a full-size 1911’s 8-inches-and-change in length also makes for a pretty long handgun to conceal, and a large portion of the concealed carrying community use them as staples.

If you buy the right holster, you can conceal some pretty large firearms. The shoulder holster, which I don’t often recommend unless it’s a method of carry you’re proficient with, can be pretty forgiving of a handgun’s size.

So my question to the audience here is: what’s the biggest firearm you’ve ever carried? What’s the biggest handgun you’ve ever regularly concealed for carry?

Let us know in the comments below, and tag a friend or two!

How Many Rounds Should You Keep With You While Carrying?

How many rounds should you keep handy in case you have to use your defensive tool against a deadly threat?

Well, people have been bouncing that question back and forth for some time.

For some time, I knew a fair number of people who carried either a 5-round revolver or a 2-round derringer with no additional ammunition and call it a day.

That might seem sparse, but with all the people who employ a single-stack magazine-based firearm with no extra ammunition it’s not that much less that what some carry today.

So, what should we carry?

Well, the 5 or 6 rounds you carry in your revolver — for those of you that do carry a revolver — is probably enough to deal with a deadly threat. Most conflicts happen fast, and with a fairly small amount of rounds exchanged between concerned parties.

Heck, I can’t even count back to you how many confrontations resolved with one or two rounds fired that we’ve discussed in our little archive here.

That being said, I don’t like “probably.” I don’t carry a firearm that will “probably” go “Bang!” when I need it to, and I’m not “probably” going to be carrying a firearm where it’s legal to do so.

Certainty in the ability to neutralize a threat is a very good thing to have.

In addition to the number and nature of a potential given threat, we also have to take into account the possibility that under fire, even well-trained shooters aren’t the most accurate.

In fact, Brandon Scott of noted multiple studies of NYPD, LAPD, and FBI shootings in which it was shown the “hit to shots fired” ratio was less than 1 in 5. Another report from the The Police Policy Studies Council studying shooting from NYPD officers from 1990-2000 showed a “hit probability” during a gunfight to be about 15 percent.

In other words, if you have two attackers who stand their ground and you’re carrying some Taurus 5-shot revolver with no extra ammunition you could very well be up a creek, should the statistics play out even along average lines.

I’m not trying to say you’re a bad shot, but people are people, and we need to be willing to acknowledge the possibility of our being pumped with adrenaline and terrified.

Keep in mind, also, that although the caliber debates may continue to rage — I have carried a little bit of everything, and I really don’t have a big opinion one way or another in the grand scheme of things — one can argue that a .45 ACP packs more stopping power than any 9mm option, but if your accuracy is 1 in 5, as discussed above, you really should carry extra ammunition either way.

So, what’s the answer?

It’s pretty simple, at least for me. If I’m carrying fewer than ten rounds in the magazine, I double my capacity (minus one in the pipe) by carrying either a spare magazine or a speed clip.

Heck, even if you’re already carrying more than ten rounds and feel like you could stand to carry more ammunition, do it. I think my record is 55 rounds.

If you are concerned about where that spare magazine will sit on your body, try an unused pocket. If you don’t have any to spare and you want easy reaching, check your favorite holster company for a magazine holder to put on your belt.

The most important thing is getting you or a threatened party from extreme danger to safety as expediently as possible. Bring what you feel you need to get the job done, but keep in mind that simple math — at least five rounds for every threat you’re likely to face — may well make you as assured as it does me.

Armed Robber Dies After Being Shot By Armed Clerk At Mississippi Store

JACKSON, MI — A man lost his life in an ill-conceived attempt to make some fast money with a female accomplice, according to reports.

Their plan? Knock over a local grocery store where a clerk was armed.

Seriously — who wants to lose their life because of a bad decision centered around a grocery store?

As WAPT reports:

Jackson police say a clerk shot an armed robber late Wednesday night at the DS Food Mart on Rose Street. JPD said the suspect, 18-year-old David Williams, died from his injuries Thursday.

According to police a man and a woman walked into the store just before 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. They say one of them showed the clerk a handgun and demanded money from the register.

Police said the clerk grabbed a gun and and fired at the two. The man and woman ran out of the store. Police said the man was found suffering from a gunshot wound and was taken to the hospital, where he later died.

Police are working to identify the second suspect and an additional arrest is expected. The investigation is ongoing.

There was no need for anyone to die that day, but the poor decision-making of a pair of thugs resulted in one lost life, one ruined life, and one almost-certainly traumatized clerk.

Even in an area like a grocery store — a target that really isn’t all that likely to produce a big payout to a robber — it is absolutely imperative to carry a firearm at work when it’s legal to do so.

I know two guys personally who got firearms in their face while working a shift at a grocery store. It’s not fair or even sensible, it’s pervasive.

Stay safe out there, folks.

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WATCH: Discover Alien Gear Holster’s New ShapeShift Modular Holster System

The video above will demonstrate for you, an offering from Alien Gear Holsters that’s unlike anything you’ve seen before.

Truly modular in design, their ShapeShift Holster is pretty spectacular. They provide a starter kit that has everything you need to get going, or you can also purchase the holsters separately.

From Alien Gear:

The ShapeShift Modular Holster System is more than just a single holster. It’s an entire carry system, designed to suit your carry needs at any time. Experienced carriers understand that no one holster is right at all times. Sometimes you need a traditional IWB holster for regular concealed carry, and at times you might prefer an appendix carry holster for concealment. You may want a high-riding OWB holster for wearing around the house or outdoors, and at times you might prefer a paddle holster for easy-on, easy-off applications or perhaps a more durable OWB holster for outdoor activities. This is what the ShapeShift was designed to do.

The user can seamlessly shift between carry configurations at a moment’s notice. Configuration changes take barely a moment, and do not require the use of tools. Switch from OWB to IWB in a matter of seconds, vice versa, or to any ShapeShift holster configuration you want. We have initially launched the ShapeShift to be compatible with some of the most popular carry pistols on the market. You can see if your gun is compatible here:

Alien Gear spent more than 2 years developing the ShapeShift, filing for almost 30 patents in the process. We’ve tested this holster system extensively to ensure quality and durability. Previous holster designs promising modularity are mere jacks of all trades; they sort of work but don’t excel. The ShapeShift doesn’t compromise function, fit, retention or comfort in the least. You can carry and conceal in comfort in any carry style you make use of.

Alien Gear Holsters are proudly made in America, by American craftsmen. We stand by our products, and the ShapeShift holster system comes with our Iron Clad Guarantee, including a 30-day “Test Drive” trial period after purchase and a full and comprehensive lifetime warranty. You can find more information about the ShapeShift holster system and our other products at our homepage, located at:

Teen Shot After Kicking In Door: “I’m At The Wrong House!”

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY, FL — A 16-year-old kid tried to ambush and murder a young Florida homeowner one late afternoon earlier this month, and things went south for him pretty quick.

When that didn’t work out for him — he decided to go with a less-than-convincing argument:

“I’m sorry man. It was the wrong house. I didn’t know. It was a joke,” the assailant said according to TC Palm.

As TC Palm reports:

Howard Nelson Bartee III, 19, of the 800 block of Eighth Court Southwest, was charged Wednesday with attempted murder and armed burglary.

Bartee was hospitalized with gunshot wounds after a residential burglary gone wrong in the 300 block of 14th Place Southwest, a Sheriff’s Office spokesman said… A 16-year-old also was charged with occupied residential burglary in connection with the incident, arrest records show.

No charges are expected for the man inside the home who shot Bartee, said Maj. Eric Flowers, spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office.

“At this point, it appears to be a self-defense situation,” Flowers said of the resident, identified as 25-year-old Taylor Reese.

Indian River County Sheriff Deryl Loar said the shooting should serve as a warning for would-be burglars.

“Many residents of Indian River County are armed and prepared to protect their property,” Loar said. “Those who commit these crimes will have to face the consequences of their actions.”

The report also mentioned later on that Reese actually was shot at by Bartee, who tried to ambush him outside his own home when he exited his house to investigate his smashed-in front door.

He shot Bartee twice, and reportedly was so upset over having to do so that he vomited. I don’t blame him.

The trauma aside, there’s nothing like a law enforcement higher-up endorsing the ability and willingness of their community members to defend their property. Thank God for those men and women.

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NC Homeowner Shoots Man Who Broke Down His Back Door

WILMINGTON, NC — In Wilmington, North Carolina, a man was ever-so-rudely woken up in the middle of the night by a man smashing the way through his back door.

It was the last mistake that burglar would ever make. One shot, one call to 911, and it was all over.

As WECT reports:

The homeowner told deputies that he heard his back door get kicked and saw a man, later identified as 35-year-old Daniel Thomas Hauser, enter his home. He grabbed his gun and shot Hauser once, fatally injuring the man.

“I had an intruder in my house. They broke in,” the homeowner said during a 911 call. “I was asleep in bed and I heard the glass break downstairs and I got out of the bed.

“Somebody came up the steps. I turned the hall light on and as soon as I saw the hall light come on, I just shot and I killed him, I’m afraid.”

No other details have been released and officials say the investigation is still ongoing. When reached Tuesday morning, the homeowner declined to be interviewed.

He says later in the 911 call that he knew the intruder, but didn’t know why he would break into his home. The homeowner also admitted to the dispatcher that he first called his friend, who is a Brunswick County deputy, and the deputy told him to call 911.

By the way, should you ever be faced with a situation such as this and the investigation continues to be ongoing — even when you are clearly in the right as this homeowner was — do what he did.

When faced with the opportunity to speak with the press, he declined.

Should you ever feel the need to share your story, wait until your name is clear. You don’t want a public account of what happened that has a one in ten million chance of having any inconsistency. It just serves to complicate the process meant to help responsible citizens like you and me.

Be smart, folks.

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Oregon Home Defense Shooting Found Justified By Grand Jury

PRINEVILLE, OR — Larry Hoevet and Kenneth McBeth knew each other, but the relationship apparently wasn’t a good one. In fact, according to news reports, McBeth and Hoevet “were longtime acquaintances with a recent past history of physical aggression.” So they were evidently sideways enough that McBeth wasn’t someone Hoevet wanted to find on his property. Yet that’s exactly what happened one afternoon last October.

According to Crook County (Oregon) District Attorney Wade Whiting’s press release . . .

McBeth began knocking on Hoevet’s front door demanding the return of personal property.  When Hoevet refused to open the front door, an angry exchange of words between the two followed. This heated exchange went on for several minutes.

That’s typically when you’d want to call 911. But as people in sticky situations find out every single day, the police can’t possibly be everywhere the moment they’re really needed.

McBeth then gave a final ultimatum to open the front door or he was coming in anyway. McBeth then counted to three, picked up a nearby patio chair and threw it through Hoevet’s front window.  The patio chair and shattered glass landed on the living room floor.  During an interview at the police station, Hoevet reported he was in fear for his life as he believed McBeth was attempting to enter into his home through the broken front window.

Oregon has, for all intents and purposes, a castle doctrine law. That means a home owner has no duty to retreat and is justified in the use of deadly force if someone is . . .

(1)Committing or attempting to commit a felony involving the use or threatened imminent use of physical force against a person; or

(2)Committing or attempting to commit a burglary in a dwelling; or

(3)Using or about to use unlawful deadly physical force against a person. [1971 c.743 §23]

Given the results of a police investigation of what happened at Hoevet’s home that day, he had a reasonable fear of any and all three of those criteria when McBeth tossed the chair through his window. And so . . .

Hoevet then described firing two shots in the direction of the broken window, striking McBeth in the left chest with one of the bullets. McBeth was able to retreat from the house to a nearby parking lot before collapsing where several citizens came to his immediate aid.

McBeth died form that single gunshot wound.

Hoevet’s actions have been the subject of a grand jury investigation for the last several months. But last week, the District Attorney announced that the grand jury has determined that Hoevet’s use of deadly force to protect himself was a legitimate case of self defense.

In this instance, the grand jury has determined that Hoevet was justified in using deadly physical force under the circumstances he encountered and it was reasonable for him to believe his life was endangered at the time he discharged the firearm from his own home.

That has to be a huge relief to Mr. Hoevet. Exactly why it took five months to determine that he was justified in using deadly force to defend his life and his property in what appears to be a straightforward case of self defense isn’t really clear. The gears of justice grind awfully slowly, especially in jurisdictions with prosecutors who aren’t believers in the individual right to keep and bear arms.

As Whiting, the District Attorney, made clear in his statement . . .

The Crook County District Attorney’s Office would like to remind the public the purpose of our local police force is to preserve the peace and ensure public safety for all. Our dedicated law enforcement officers are well trained in de-escalation tactics and have the ability to diffuse difficult situations in a safe manner.  When possible, please make every effort to call the police and request assistance before taking matters into your own hands. A quick phone call and response by an officer can quickly resolve a situation before matters escalate out of control.

The operative word here is “quick.” When seconds count, even the most responsive police officers are only minutes away. Mr. Hoevet likely avoided serious injury — or worse — by defending himself with a firearm. A reasonable case of armed self defense by any definition.

Iowa Man Freed Under State’s New ‘Stand Your Ground’ Law

So-called ‘stand your ground’ laws have been allegedly controversial since the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case back in 2012. The fact that the Florida’s stand your ground law was never used as a defense during the Zimmerman prosecution didn’t seem to matter. Anti-gunners seized on the issue — now on the books in twenty-four states — claiming the laws gave gun owners a license to kill with impunity.

In reality, stand your ground laws are merely an extension of castle doctrine laws. In states where gun owners have a duty to retreat before using a firearm in a self defense situation, castle doctrine laws designate an individual’s home (and, in some states, his vehicle) as different. When attacked in a person’s home and in reasonable fear of death or grievous bodily harm, castle doctrine laws remove the duty to retreat before resorting to armed self defense.

Stand your ground laws extend the castle doctrine outside the home. Stand your ground means the use of armed self defense is defensible anywhere a gun owner has a legal right to be. In other words, stand your ground removes an individual’s duty to retreat before using a firearm to defend his life in the face of a reasonable threat.

Iowa was a duty to retreat state until last year. But the problem with duty to retreat is that running away isn’t always an option, depending on the situation. One such situation is when you’ve been charged and knocked down by two armed thugs in a dark alleyway.

Iowa enacted their stand your ground law in April of 2017. In October, Kevin Duane Staley was walking through an alley when he was attacked by Devin Alexander Davis and another man. At least one of them — most likely Davis — had a knife.

…Staley was ambushed in an alley by two men wearing hoodies and bandannas as they screamed and ran toward him. Staley pulled his registered handgun after he was knocked down and shot Davis. Both attackers ran off, and Davis collapsed and died a few moments later. A knife was later found near Davis’ body.

So while it would have been at least arguable that facing two attackers while flat on his back would have given Staley the right to draw and fire even under the state’s old duty-to-retreat regime, Iowa’s new stand your ground law should have removed any doubt.

Should have. Despite the new law, though, Staley was inexplicably charged with manslaughter by prosecutors. Until, that is, the matter came before District Judge James Heckerman.

The court ruling filed Monday ordered the release of Kevin Duane Staley, 39, of Red Oak, who was scheduled to go on trial Tuesday. … “A reasonable person being attacked in a dark alley by masked men would believe their life to be in jeopardy,” Heckerman wrote in his order.

Given the circumstances of the case, it clearly never should have gotten that far. Staley’s attorney was naturally pleased with the ruling.

Staley’s lawyer, DeShawne Bird-Sell, called the outcome “exactly in line with what the Legislature put in place” and praised Heckerman for having “enough guts to actually rule” on the stand your ground issue.

Why was Staley prosecuted for defending his life in the first place?

(Assistant Montgomery County attorney Mark) Swanson said prosecutors weren’t aware of the statute when they began working on the case.

“It’s brand new,” he said. “We’re just a small county. We haven’t had this issue.”

That may be. But you can be damned sure they were made aware of the statute long before it ever got as far as it did.

So to hear prosectors try to justify their actions, you can attribute the legal jeopardy Staley found himself in and the attendant costs of defending himself to their own ignorance of the law. How far do you suppose the average citizen get if he argued that he’d violated a new state statute because he was unaware of it?

TRAGIC: Homeowner Holding Suspect At Gunpoint Is Shot And Killed

WALHALLA, SC — Tyler Broome was something of a problem. The budding young felon had been caught trespassing on Robert McDowell’s property in northwest South Carolina before, as recently as last summer. Oconee County Sheriff’s spokesman Jimmy Watts says that Broome “had been served with a trespass notice from the same address on Quarter Horse Trail on June 21, 2017.”

That warning apparently didn’t make much of an impression on Mr. Broome. Early Wednesday morning, he was back at it again, prowling on the McDowell property which he undoubtedly saw as a good target for a burglary. It’s almost as if criminals don’t really worry about legal niceties like trespass notices, restraining orders or prohibited person laws.

Robert McDowell discovered Broome on his land and held him at gunpoint while his wife dialed 911.

While deputies were on their way to the home, they were told shots had been fired and the homeowner, later identified as 63-year-old Robert Steven McDowell, had been shot.

Deputies said McDowell’s wife took them to the back of the home, where they found McDowell. Deputies said they administered first aid on McDowell until paramedics arrived.

Broome had put one round in the property owner’s stomach. McDowell got off a shot as well, hitting Broome once.

Both men were taken to Greenville Memorial Hospital for treatment. McDowell died about 6 a.m. Wednesday, the coroner said.

Broome won’t be trespassing on anyone’s property again for quite a long time. He “faces charges of murder, possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime and entering a premises after warning, according to warrant documents provided by the Sheriff’s Office.”

End result: an innocent man is dead and the taxpayers of South Carolina will be responsible for the care and feeding of a 24-year-old murderer for most of the rest of his life. And so it goes.

Brazen Home Invasion Leads To Shots Fired From Both Sides

FRANCIS, OK — One armed homeowner encountered a pair of thugs in his house in the middle of the night, and one of them opened up on him with four shots.

He missed with all of them.

The homeowner was more than happy to give him a lesson in disciplined firing and shot placement.

As KXII reports:

It was just before 3 a.m. when Dennis Reif heard the commotion in his kitchen.

“I got my gun out of the drawer because I heard someone smashing in here and I saw a flashlight beam,” Reif said.

Reif says he came face to face with Chris Born, who he claims fired four shots at him, but missed. That’s when Reif grabbed his .38 caliber revolver and shot Born twice in the chest.

“I just quickly leveled at him and fired to protect myself and he screamed and yelled he was hit,”Reif said.

“When the shots were fired they dropped everything and left the residence,” Pontotoc County Sheriff John Christian said.

Investigators say Born took off with Dustin Hoots in a pickup, they were caught after a short chase, but Hoots, the second burglary suspect ran off and is still missing. Two other women, Jeanette Matthews and Tara Whittecar were in a separate pickup, and were also arrested. The sheriff says he thinks they were acting as the lookout for Born.

Christian said they found several stolen guns at a local shop building while trying to find Hoots. Christian said Born, a convicted felon, runs the shop and faces felonious possession of a firearm.

You can get as many shots off as you want, thugs, but if you’re not hitting anything you’re just letting the world know where you are and that you’re up to no good.

The .38 caliber rarely gets the credit it deserves these days, but as you can see it works just fine.

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Bystander Comes To The Aid Of Store Owner After He’s Shot By Three Thugs

DECATUR, GA — An armed bystander very likely saved the life of a store owner who was ambushed at his liquor store, 11 Alive reports.

Apparently, these robbers were more than happy to shoot a man in the chest so long as it meant a payday for them. Someone who watched the owner horribly attacked quickly came to the rescue.

As 11 Alive reports:

At midnight on Monday, officers responded to reports of three individuals suffering from gunshot wounds at a liquor store located at 1920 Wesley Chapel Road. When officers arrived, they found the store owner suffering from a gunshot wound to his chest, a possible suspect suffering from a gunshot wound in his back and another individual who may or may not be involved in the incident was suffering from a gunshot wound to his foot.

Police believe that this was an attempted robbery and the store owner had come to this establishment during closing time when he was confronted by three individuals. One of the alleged suspects fired at the store owner, hitting him in the chest, and a bystander then shot the individual in the back.

Police say that the bystander allegedly works as a jailer in a nearby county and was just a possible patron during the time of the incident. The individual who was shot in the foot may or may not be a suspect but is being questioned at this time… The store owner was transported to a nearby hospital in serious but stable condition and no fatalities have been reported.

Liquor stores can be problem areas for concealed carriers — in many areas carrying a firearm in one is banned. In such areas, however, be sure to keep your firearm safely stored in your car.

Stay safe out there, folks.

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An Inmate, Just Released, Is Shot After Attemping A Car Jacking. Right Back To Prison He Goes.

PHILADELPHIA, PA — A former prisoner got himself shot in the chest after attempting to carjack a prison guard not even an hour after being released for parole violation, NBC Philadelphia reports.

Apparently, he felt the crushing need to resume his criminal career just too great to wait for the next day.

As CBS New York Reports:

Police say 26-year-old Jamal Bennett attempted to carjack the 66-year-old guard just before 11 p.m., right after the guard finished his shift at Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility in the city’s Holmesburg section. The two men fought next to the officer’s vehicle until the guard pulled his personal weapon and opened fire, striking Bennett in the chest.

The recently-freed inmate was rushed to Jefferson Torresdale Hospital in critical condition but was expected to survive. The officer suffered minor injuries to his head and neck.

“It seems like he was starting his life of crime over again within minutes of being released, attempting to carjack this off-duty correctional officer,” Philadelphia Police Chief inspector Scott Small told CBS Philly. “So it is somewhat bizarre.”

Bennett had just been released from custody on a probation violation for a weapons charge. Court documents don’t list an attorney representing him.

I don’t even know what to say. There’s dumb, and then there’s this.

Criminals, as a general rule, are not the smartest of folks. We’ve got plenty of stories here to back that up. I think trying to rob a guard minutes after being lawfully released from prison might be a new record. According to NBC Philadelphia, Bennett wasn’t even armed.

He may have been trying to take advantage of some perceived youthful age — but look how well that worked out for him. Dumb mistake.

I don’t expect that Bennett will be breathing free air any time soon.

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What to Put in Your Range Bag: the Basics

Alright, so you’ve got a dedicated range bag. Now, what do you put in it?

Well, a lot of what we’re about to cover here should be pretty self-explanatory, but as always, it’s good to cover the basics.

Let’s dig in.

    1. Medical Kit
      Of course this has got to come first, because safety has to come first. Make sure that, at the very least, you have a solid first aid kit. In the case of the gun range, pick up a first aid kit at minimum. It will cover the majority of injuries you’re likely to pick up at the range — annoying cuts and insect stings and bites. If you want to go full tilt, you could pick something up like the AR 500 Armor Emergency Personal Injury Kit. Should an injury of a high caliber be sustained, be sure to be seen by qualified medical personnel.
    2. Eye and Ear Protection
      OK — maybe safety comes first and second. Always have a good pair of eyes and ears, and keep them in your range bag — that way they can’t run off when you need them most. If you want to earn extra points, keep an extra set for your range mate who sometimes forgets his or hers.
    3. Targets
      If I ever forget anything to bring to the range, it’s going to be my collection of targets. If you can fit them in your range bag, do it. Even if you have to fold them, that’ll be alright so long as you bring your
    4. Staple Gun, Sharpie, and Measuring Tape
      Don’t count on your range on the guy behind you to leave one unless it’s explicitly provided in the price of your membership or visit. Having to dig up something to stick the targets to wherever they’re supposed to stay takes time! Save yourself the headache. Bring one with you, and keep it in staples. Your sharpie is just to mark where you’ve hit for easier acquisition at a distance. The measuring tape is for measuring your groups, so don’t get something bulky and long. It’d just be dead weight.
    5. Firearm Maintenance Tools
      If you’ve got a problem with your firearm on the range, you’re going to wish you brought your maintenance tools with you to sort things out. Don’t waste a chance to keep plugging way with your favorite problem child. Kit up.
    6. Holsters
      Any holsters you don’t plan on wearing in, but still want for use on the range should your range allow holster drawing, put them in your bag. Don’t go crazy — these can eat up a lot of space. Decide what you want to practice with, and leave the rest for your next trip.
    7. Ammunition and Spare Magazines
      Well, yeah. You might need ammunition. Take all you’re going to use, and learn what you can in expending it!
    8. Firearms
      If you are only shooting a couple of handguns and can fit them in the remaining space in your bag comfortably, separately, and securely, have at it.

    It’s also worth mentioning that if you plan on shooting out past 25-50 yards, you ought bring a spotting scope if you have one. That’s not really something something you’re going to be keeping in your range bag, but it’s worth lugging.

    What do you think about this list? Is anything missing? Please share this on Facebook and Twitter and let us know!

Tampa Clerk Shoots Robbery Suspect In Leg At Gas Station

TAMPA, FL — A man trying to make some quick cash at a local gas station wound up terrified for his life when he encountered an armed clerk who was not afraid to pull the trigger on the man facing him down.

The fact of the matter is the man is lucky to be walking away with his life.

As WFTS reports:

Tampa Police are investigating a shooting at the Sunoco gas station located at E. Hillsborough Avenue and 34th Street. Police said a man attempted to rob the gas station using a pellet gun early Friday. Officers said the clerk armed himself with his own firearm and fired at the suspect striking him in the leg. Investigators believe the shots were fired just outside the gas station door.

This is the real issue when someone tries to use a pellet gun, airsoft gun (orange tip muted, thank you very much), or any other firearm-looking item as a firearm, and this goes for well-meaning people just as much as it goes for thugs.

People are going to treat you like you’re carrying a loaded gun if you give them an excuse to, and the fact of the matter is any bad guy presenting that bluff is endangering himself far more than even an attempted robbery himself. Hell, the guy was practically begging to be fired on, and there wasn’t jack he could do about it except to run for the hills, which is a pretty tricky thing when shot in the leg.

There is a lot circulating these days about how guns, no matter where they are, are a threat. The fact remains that if we had more employees armed, like this clerk, we would have fewer people willing to become deadly threats to innocent people on a daily basis.

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How to Pick a Range Bag

If you’re going to visit the gun range once a year or so — which many gun owners do, there’s little need for a dedicated bag made specifically for the purpose of moving your kit to and fro.

If you’re doing so habitually — or looking to make a habit of range trips soon — you really should invest in a dedicated range bag.

Your choice in bag can be modest or extravagant — my first range bag was just a many-pocketed duffel bag with threadbare straps. It depends on what kind of budget you’re working with and how fancy you’re trying to be. All that being said, you’ve got three questions you want to be asking when considering a range bag:

  1. Is the bag durable?
  2. Can the bag carry all the things you want to carry to and from the range, and can you carry it comfortably while doing so?
  3. Are there enough compartments for you to prevent all of your kit from lying in a disorganized heap?

If you’ve got a “yes” to all those questions, congrats! You got a range bag. I should probably add that you want your bag to be able to hold any firearms you have in there with reasonable security.

That being said, I have seen everything from cooler bags to laptop bags to dedicated range bags used to pack gear out to the range, and although I may have thought the cooler bag was weird, it sure lasted him longer than my threadbare duffel bag veteran of the 90’s.

Once I wore out my duffel bag, I decided to upgrade. I ended up with a dedicated range bag — an Orca Tactical Gun and Ammo Shooting Range Duffel Bag, in case anyone cares. I have enjoyed it so far, and I plan on punching up a review for it in time.

The important things to remember here are somewhat similar to what you want in a tackle box: keep your stuff safe, keep your stuff organized, and pick something you’re going to be comfortable moving your stuff in.

At that point, it’s down to personal preference.

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