Join Date: September 9, 2008
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
I just got this in a VCDL
update from Philip Van Cleave (VCDL President). I thought it was worth posting here as it has some interesting points, and does a lot to clear up the situation (not just what the news tells you). Sorry its a bit long, but there is no way to directly link to it.
On Friday I received a surprise call from the gun owner who has been
in the press this week for saving lives at a Richmond store. The gun
owner used a replica 1875 Remington Army .45 Long Colt with a 7 1/2
inch barrel to stop a criminal who had shot the store's owner.
He wanted to remain anonymous, but called so that the story could be
set straight, as much of what was in the press wasn't accurate.
Board member Dennis O'Connor and I ended up meeting with him today
(Saturday) at the Golden Market store, where the shooting had taken
place one week earlier.
Besides being able to actually see the layout of the store, Dennis and
I got to see the security videos of the shooting!
We also got to meet the store owner who had been shot twice during the
hold up, but is now back at his store. More on this great man later.
Here is what we know from talking to the gun owner and watching the
The gun owner (GO) was in the store waiting in line to pay for an item
when the bad guy (BG) came in wearing dark sunglasses and trying to
coverup his face while brandishing a revolver. The BG yelled for
everyone to get down and before anybody could react, immediately
walked over to the store owner and in a cold-blooded fashion shot him
twice. The owner then dropped down behind the counter. It wasn't
more than 2 seconds after the BG first walked in the doors that he
shot the store owner.
Those shots at the store owner missed a teenage boy's head by inches.
The GO yelled for the BG to drop his gun as the GO drew his gun. The
BG opened fire on the GO. The GO returned fire, hitting the BG as the
GO dove hard for the floor behind some barrels full of ice and drinks.
The BG ran towards the back of the store, aiming his gun at an
innocent man laying prone on the floor. Luckily the BG was too
distracted by the GO to shoot the man. There is no doubt in my mind
that the man would have been shot in cold blood that day if it weren't
for that GO returning fire.
The BG kept trying to get to the front of the store by walking up
various aisles and firing shots at the GO as he did so. At one point
cans of tinned meat exploded on a shelf as the BG took a shot at the GO.
What was bizarre was that the BG actually was strutting around like he
owned the place while under fire! As he approached the front of one
aisle, he again pointed a gun at a person on the ground and was about
to execute him, when he was again distracted by the GO.
Finally the GO spotted the BG at the front of an aisle standing in the
Much to his surprise, the GO discovered that when he dove hard for the
floor he had somehow broken the trigger on his gun!
But the gun was a single action, so the GO pushing himself up with one
arm, aimed the gun, pulled the hammer back and let it fly forward -
Although seriously wounded three times, the BG came at the GO. The BG
tried to grab the GO's gun since the BG's gun was out of ammunition.
A life-and-death struggle began. The GO got a grip on the BG's gun
and the GO hit the BG twice hard on the temple with the 7 1/2" barrel
on his rather heavy gun.
The BG finally broke off the engagement, tried to run out the front
door, but collapsed at the door.
The GO secured the BG's gun and keeping an eye on the now unconscious
bad guy, called 9-1-1.
The BG has now died (he was in critical condition since the shooting).
The police showed up a minute or so after the 9-1-1 call and initially
had everyone in the store at gun point and handcuffed some until they
could figure out who was who.
What really impressed me was that on the surveillance video, the
owner, while shot twice by the BG, was walking around making sure that
all of his customers were OK after the shooting had ended. He only
let himself collapse after he was sure they were OK! Words fail me on
this. I am so glad that he made it. What a dichotomy - a BG who
shoots an innocent person without provocation, almost killing a
teenager while doing so - caring for no one but himself. And then
the store owner who, while seriously wounded, making sure his
customers were OK. Evil exists and so does Good. Both were on
display in those two minutes of terror. Luckily only the bad guy was
killed. The owner was walking with a limp, clearly in some pain. :-(
A lot of people owe their lives to that GO. However, he is having
none of it, saying that he simply did what he had to do.
The GO wanted me to share the following points:
* Buy a quality gun - don't use some cheap $90 gun to protect your
life. He considered his gun to be a good one and even then the
trigger broke under the extreme stress of a life-and-death battle.
* Practice with your gun, get training, and be good with that gun.
* More and more BGs are choosing to kill in cold blood to get what
they want. If they can't live the "good life, " then they don't care
if their crimes send them to jail.
* He also noted that fewer and fewer BGs are getting any jail time.
Here are my thoughts from watching that tape:
* Talk about a cold-blooded, fast attack where an innocent was shot
without warning! Unbelievable. Situational awareness is really
important. Luck doesn't hurt, either.
* Open carry was an advantage in this case because in the video I saw
just how fast the GO managed to draw his gun and begin to return
fire. You always hear about how open carry is so bad tactically -
you'll be the first one shot, etc. Oh, yeah? The GO had a HUGE gun
in plain sight and he was NOT shot. Who got shot first? An unarmed
* I am betting that the BG was on drugs, big time. He was hit with
THREE 45-CALIBER BULLETS, with at least two of those hits causing
grievous injury, and he continued the fight as if he had not even been
hit at all! In fact he was strutting like a peacock who owned the
place as he was walking up and down the aisles trying to get to a
position where he could shoot the GO. As a gun owner, you need to be
prepared for that eventuality and keep shooting the BG in his center
of mass until he stops his attack. Don't think one shot, or even two
shots, are going to do it. And a head shot might well be what it
takes to stop such an attack quickly.
* If you are out of ammunition, a gun does make a great weapon with
which to bludgeon someone in hand-to-hand combat.
* This shooting bolstered both sides of the argument about how much
ammunition one should carry. The good guy got off only four shots (of
course his gun had a broken trigger and that didn't help). The bad
guy got off six shots and ran out of ammunition (thankfully). But in
my mind, and having had some advanced training, I think an extra
magazine for a semi-auto, or a reloader for a revolver, is a good
idea. WIth someone like the BG above, if you run out of ammunition
before he does, he will execute you. Period.
And it's Killer Angel... as in the book
Last edited by KLRANGL; July 17, 2009 at 10:39 PM.