CRIME AND SELF-DEFENSE
* Roughly 16,272 murders were committed in the United States during 2008. Of these, about 10,886 or 67% were committed with firearms.
* A 1993 nationwide survey of 4,977 households found that over the previous five years, at least 0.5% of households had members who had used a gun for defense during a situation in which they thought someone “almost certainly would have been killed” if they “had not used a gun for protection.” Applied to the U.S. population, this amounts to 162,000 such incidents per year. This figure excludes all “military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”
* Based on survey data from the U.S. Department of Justice, roughly 5,340,000 violent crimes were committed in the United States during 2008. These include simple/aggravated assaults, robberies, sexual assaults, rapes, and murders. Of these, about 436,000 or 8% were committed by offenders visibly armed with a gun.
* Based on survey data from a 2000 study published in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, U.S. civilians use guns to defend themselves and others from crime at least 989,883 times per year.
* A 1993 nationwide survey of 4,977 households found that over the previous five years, at least 3.5% of households had members who had used a gun “for self-protection or for the protection of property at home, work, or elsewhere.” Applied to the U.S. population, this amounts to 1,029,615 such incidents per year. This figure excludes all “military service, police work, or work as a security guard.”
* A 1994 survey conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Americans use guns to frighten away intruders who are breaking into their homes about 498,000 times per year.
Mother Shoots Home Intruder After He Cornered Her in Attic with Her Twins
A would-be burglar was looking to cash in, but instead found himself in a world of pain when a Georgia mother who refused to be victimized shot him multiple times in the face and neck.
The Loganville woman, who was not identified, was in the home with her 9-year-old twins on Friday afternoon when someone began ringing the doorbell. Thinking it was just a door-to-door salesperson, she didn’t answer.
But after the ringing persisted, the person began prying the door open with a crowbar. She quickly retreated to an attic crawlspace with the children, but not before she also picked up her handgun.
The burglar, whom police identified as Paul Ali Slater, did a room-by-room search of the home, and when he reached the attic, she was ready.
Paul Ali Slater
Walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman told WSBTV: ”The perpetrator opens that door. Of course, at that time he’s staring at her, her two children and a .38 revolver.’
She reportedly fired all six rounds, missing only once. The other shots hit Slater about the face and neck.
Sheriff Chapman told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: ”The guy’s face down, crying. The woman told him to stay down or she’d shoot again.’
Slater did eventually get up and managed to return to his vehicle that was parked outside the home, but his injuries left him unable to drive, and it wasn’t long before he crashed into a wooded area. He was found by sheriff’s deputies, bleeding heavily in a driveway on the block.
Sheriff Chapman told the paper that he was pleading with his deputies, saying: “I’m dying. Help me.” He was carted off to Gwinnett Medical Center for treatment of the gunshot wounds, and he is expected to survive.
WSBTV reported that Slater has a long criminal history and was released from prison in August.
The woman’s husband, Donnie Herman, is just glad his wife and kids are safe. He told WSBTV: “My wife is a hero. She protected her kids. She did what she was supposed to do as a responsible, prepared gun owner.” (Sources: The Daily Reporter, DailyMail.co.uk, 01/06/2013)
Young Mother Defends Self and Baby, Kills Intruder
A teenage mother shot and killed an intruder after a 911 operator said she was allowed to defend her infant son and herself with force.
Sarah McKinley, 18, killed Justin Martin with a single gunshot wound on New Year’s Eve when he forced his way into her Blanchard, Okla. home and came at her with a long hunting knife, ABC News reported.
Justin Shane Martin
The deadly encounter occurred about a week after the young mom’s husband died of cancer, according to TV station KOCO. Martin darkened McKinley’s door on the day of her husband’s funeral, several days before the shooting. He claimed he was a neighbor who wanted to say hello, but she didn’t open the door.
Martin returned with an accomplice on Dec. 31, and they tried to force their way into the modest house. When McKinley heard the men trying to break in, she called 911.
She also holed up in her bedroom with a 12-gauge shotgun and a pistol, while she put a bottle in her three-month-old son’s mouth.
“I’ve got two guns in my hand — Is it okay to shoot him if he comes in this door?” McKinley asked the 911 operator.
“I can’t tell you that you can do that, but you do what you have to do to protect your baby,” the dispatcher told McKinley when she asked a second time. The call went on for 21 minutes as the men powered their way into McKinley’s house.
Eventually, Martin kicked in the door and charged at her with a knife, but McKinley fired before he could injure her.
Police found Martin slumped over a couch that McKinley had used to barricade the door and pronounced him dead on the scene, TV station News 9 reported.
Martin’s alleged accomplice, Dustin Stewart, fled when he heard the gunshot and later surrendered to police, according to The Oklahoman.
First Assistant District Attorney James Walters told CNN that McKinley will not be charged because she acted in self-defense.
(Research published at Police One reexamined the Tueller 21-Foot Rule (an knife-wielding attacker can cover 21 feet in the time it takes for an officer to draw and fire his first defensive round). One finding concluded: “a 21-foot reactionary gap is not sufficient.” Once the attacker was through the door and charging her, she had one chance to stop him.)
“A person has the right to protect themselves, their family and their property,” Walters said.
Blanchard PD Detective Dan Huff noted: “The Oklahoma laws are clear on the home and the rights to your home are absolute.”
The accomplice was charged with felony murder, because somebody died while during the commission of a felony–he’s also charged with first-degree burglary–which carries a maximum sentence of death.
In an interview, Sarah said: “You have to make a choice, you or him. I chose my son over him.” (Sources: Huffington Post, 01/04/2012, Howard Nemerov, PJ Tatler, 01/05/2012)
Oklahoma 12-Year-Old Shoots Home Invader
A young Calera girl was home alone one day when she heard someone ring the doorbell. Afraid to answer the door, she then heard the man go around to the back door and proceed to kick it in. Frightened, she called her mother at work, who told her to retrieve the family pistol and hide.
Later, the intruder approached the upstairs closet where the youngster, who was both armed and frightened, was hiding. Seeing the doorknob turning and fearing for her life, the child fired one shot from the pistol, which both hit the home invader and put him to flight.
Police, who had been alerted to the situation by the mother and responded quickly to the scene, arrived in time to apprehend the wounded man down the street from the scene. He faces felony charges after his release from hospital. (Sources: Editor, USCCA, KXII News 12, 01/11/2013)
Highland woman says she shot intruder to save her sister’s life
Debi Keeney says she was only trying to save her sister’s life when she shot a man who had forced his way into her apartment. She says her sister, Donna Carlyle, 47, was gasping as the man demanded money and put Carlyle in a choke hold after breaking in early this morning.
“All I could see was Donna’s face going blue, like her life was being choked out of her,” Keeney, 55, said in an interview this afternoon.
The incident occurred at about 3:30 a.m. at an apartment complex in the 2600 block of Eagle Way in Highland. Keeney and Carlyle live next door to each other. Carlyle was visiting her sister’s apartment when the assault happened.
The alleged intruder, 33, is being treated at a local hospital for multiple gunshot wounds and is listed in critical condition, police said. They have not released his name.
Highland Police Chief Terry Bell said this morning that the man was shot multiple times and that police were still “piecing it together.” He added that he had no information to believe the man knew the women.
Keeney said in the interview that she only shot the man once with her gun, which she described as a five-shot, .22-caliber derringer. A friend bought it for her years ago, she said. Police for now are keeping the gun as evidence.
Keeney also said neither she nor her sister knew the intruder. “I have no idea where he came from or where he was going,” she said.
Keeney had walked outside her apartment to smoke a cigarette when she was attacked. “As I was closing the door behind me, this really big man pushed his way through the door,” she said. “I started pushing back…He put one arm behind my arm and picked me up and threw me over my couch.”
The man then went behind a recliner, where her sister was sitting, and put Carlyle in a choke hold. “He had her trapped like a rat,” Keeney said.
Keeney said she usually keeps her gun in a nightstand drawer located next to her couch. She grabbed the gun and told the man to let her sister go. “We both were saying we don’t have any money,” she said. “If we would have had any money, we would have given it to him.”
Keeney says she then fired what she thought was a warning shot. “I told him, ‘I’m going to shoot you if you don’t let her go,’ ” she recalled. “With that, I shot him in the back because he moved from behind the chair. He let her go. He took some steps toward me.”
The man fell to the floor, and Keeney stood over him, waiting for police to arrive. “I was scared to death that he was going to kill my sister,” she said. “It was dark. He was a huge man, and it was 3-something in the morning.” (Sources: Denise Hollinshed, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 02/10/2013)
An Alabama woman said she was forced to shoot an intruder that broke into her home this week in order to protect herself and her daughters.
Martha Lewis of Dora, Alabama, told WVTM-TV it was about 3 a.m. Tuesday morning when she was awakened by a loud noise, which turned out to be someone kicking in her door. Lewis said she called the police and grabbed her gun, then went to her daughters’ room and told them each to get something to defend themselves with. She said one grabbed an ax and one got a butcher knife.
They were at the top of the stairs when they saw a man standing there at the bottom. “I knew when he stepped on the landing that I would have to shoot him,” Lewis said. “He starts like coming up the stairs and he said, ‘would you shoot me?‘ And I said ’I don’t want to have to but I will.’”
Ignoring her warnings, the man kept coming — and that’s when Lewis said she fired. “It wasn’t like, oh can I pull the trigger? It was like when should I shoot? When will he be close enough that I know I won’t miss him? That’s one of the things that was going through my mind,” she said.
The man stumbled outside into the yard where police found him, WVTM reported. Police said he’s 25-year-old Michael Jacobs and was hospitalized in stable condition.
Lewis told the station one of the responding police officers said it would have been a different situation if she hadn’t been armed. “One of them said we would be writing up a different report if she had not had that gun,” Lewis said.
Police said Lewis will not be charged for shooting the suspect. He faces charges of burglary and criminal mischief as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, according to WVTM.
Lewis said she’s had the gun for about three years but only for protection purposes. “There‘s so much talk about banning guns and gun control but they’re for protection,” she said. “There’s no way that I could have fought him off.” (Source: WVTM-TV, 08/17/2012)