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Old April 12, 2011, 01:23 PM   #1
S_Constitutionist
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I reported a MWAG and had some interesting thoughts after..

Story:

I was driving out of my apartment complex one evening (pretty nice part of town) as two young "thug-looking (pants hanging low, sideways red caps, baggy clothing)" males walked through the gate into the complex. Its how some people dress around here, so I would normally think nothing of it. As I passed however, I saw one of the kids lift up his shirt exposing a chrome plated pistol tucked into his boxers "mexican-carry" style, as he adjusted it in his waistband. He noticed that I had seen him do this and gave me a nervous yet menacing glare as I drove past. My right hand instinctively drifted down to my pistol as I drove away and I immediately called the police.

Now, I am a big OC rights guy and a huge proponent of legal CCW. At first I questioned whether or not he was a law abiding citizen and if so- should I call the police. Had be been carrying in a holster and/or not given me that "somethings not right" feeling, I probably wouldnt have called. But, here was the kicker: the kid looked all of about 15-16 years old, as well as his buddy.

You may or may not agree with me reporting it, but I think it was the right thing to do. Sometimes you just have to trust your instincts, and something seemed wrong. I'm sure dispatch thought I was a sheeple reporting a legal ccw, but I would have felt horrible had someone been harmed in my neighborhood and I didnt do anything. I was on my way to a meeting and never heard back from the police.

Afterwards:
My lady was in the vehicle with me and said that she thought the gun could have been a fake airsoft gun and they were trying to look cool. Afterall, the kids looked 15 or so. This brought me to a startling scenario that I have never considered. What if I ran into these punks while checking the mail and they decided that they wanted to "scare" me. When approached, my training kicks in and I demand they "STOP RIGHT THERE". They scoff at this and they continue to approach while while pulling up a t-shirt, exposing a pistol, and reaching for it. At this point, I am drawing and firing controlled pairs at COM.

When its all said and done... these kids had an airsoft gun, were trying to play a prank, and one is dead. Now, I would certainly be justified in my actions - a reasonable person would have done the same. I believe that anyone that stupid is going to have something bad happen to them eventually... but I shudder to think how the media and other groups would crucify me. Has anyone considered this? I know that I wouldnt be remorseful if I shot a rapist breaking into my house, but a stupid unarmed kid? I honestly feel like that would get to me...

What say you TFL?
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Old April 12, 2011, 02:01 PM   #2
Hiker 1
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Well first off, you did the right thing by calling the cops. It's all about behavior - squirrley looking/acting people are usually not on the up and up. What's the worst that would happen? The cops show up and either arrest criminals or scare the dumb kids carrying fake guns, who hopefully learn their lesson.

As for the "stupid, unarmed kid", "doing this for the first time", "turning his life around", "more scared than you" - pick a cliche'. A man with a gun is a man with a gun. Unless you can identify the weapon as a fake faster than you can react to the threat, a real problem is about to happen. It happens to LEO's all the time.

As far as the aftermath - it's not going to be good.
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Old April 12, 2011, 02:04 PM   #3
GregInAtl
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Were there any other witnesses besides the "other thug"? If he had threatened you and you shot him. It would have been your word against the other thug who could have denied they provoked you
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Old April 12, 2011, 02:15 PM   #4
BikerRN
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What anyone thinks of your actions is unimportant, until they hold some form of power over you.

You are the one that will have to decide if your actions were right and proper when you face yourself in the mirror. As to the weapon being an Airsoft, maybe, but then again maybe not. Here the important thing is, what did you believe it to be at that moment?

If the situation is such that I believe you are making a moment towards a weapon whether you have a weapon or not, given the totality of the circumstances, it is entirely probable that one can shoot an unarmed individual and still be justified. It's not so much if one has a gun. It is what one the other party believes.

I myself would've most likely called the local police if I was in your circumstances. That is what they get paid for, to investigate suspicious circumstances and determine if a crime has in fact been, or is being, committed.

Biker
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Old April 12, 2011, 02:21 PM   #5
Spats McGee
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First, I say you were right to call the police. From what I read in your post, you spotted someone who looked ineligible to CCW (a minor), who was in fact, carrying a concealed pistol. You had no way of determining if it was an airsoft gun. I, for one, would not want to approach a couple of young thugs to ask them, "Is that a real gun you have in your pants?"

Somewhere I read an article (I forget where) directed to law enforcement on how to deal with CCers. One of the points made was that folks who carry concealed legally tend to wear holsters. Those who carry illegally need to be able to ditch the gun, and any evidence of it, as fast as possible. Accordingly, they don't use holsters. Was it possible that he was legally CCing? Sure. Likely? Not from what you posted.
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Old April 12, 2011, 02:24 PM   #6
Aguila Blanca
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Quote:
When its all said and done... these kids had an airsoft gun, were trying to play a prank, and one is dead. Now, I would certainly be justified in my actions - a reasonable person would have done the same. I believe that anyone that stupid is going to have something bad happen to them eventually... but I shudder to think how the media and other groups would crucify me. Has anyone considered this? I know that I wouldnt be remorseful if I shot a rapist breaking into my house, but a stupid unarmed kid? I honestly feel like that would get to me...
In this state, displaying a replica of a firearm is legally deemed to be armed assault. Shooting is justified. This is why it's not legal to carry such things around -- because the politicians know that police would have to shoot such punks and they'd prefer not to have that happen.

I doubt the media would crucify you, even here -- and my current state of residence is not the most gun-friendly state in the country by quite a stretch. Anyone who presents himself as an armed threat invites an armed response.
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Old April 12, 2011, 03:05 PM   #7
S_Constitutionist
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Thank you all for the responses. You have given me more to ponder about.. I will look up the laws in my state concerning replicas or the imitation of a firearm. I agree that should be the law everywhere for exactly this reason.

Time to hunt: Perhaps you meant to respond to a different post? The first part of my post was what actually happened.. no one was shot or even threatened. The second part of my post, "Afterwards" was simply me thinking about another scenario that this made me consider. I apologize if you misunderstood.
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Old April 12, 2011, 03:24 PM   #8
Spats McGee
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When I was a teenager, I saw ads in some magazine for replica pistols. Revolvers, 1911s, all kinds. They were supposed to be incredibly realistic, esxcept for the fact that they didn't fire. I wanted one. Dad said no. He thought it was just too easy to get into trouble with something like that. Looking back on it, he was right. It is too easy to get into trouble with something like that, in exactly the kind of scenario you describe, S_Constitutionist. It would be a terrible tragedy for some kid to get shot because he was out screwing around with an airsoft, pretending for it to be a real gun. Still, when someone whips a gun out, there's not a lot of time to figure out your plan of action. If you spend too much time thinking about whether their gun is real or not, you could wind up the victim.
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Old April 12, 2011, 03:25 PM   #9
ang4me
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I'd have called the cops too. As a legal weapons carrier, personally I have no problem identifying myself and providing my carry permit to a LEO. My only other comment is that you must have eyes like an eagle to definitively say that he wasn't using a holster. Maybe he had a small, dark clip holster, clipped onto his pants, with the clip tucked behind his belt. Hard to say. Either way, though, no harm done - you did the right thing.

As to your scenario: if someone behaving suspiciously produces what legitimately appears to be a weapon and threatens me with it, best of luck to them, but they've played their hand and I have to play mine while I still have the chance.
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Old April 12, 2011, 03:48 PM   #10
MLeake
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Calling the cops was the right thing to do.

And, if somebody is stupid enough to come at me with a fake weapon, I don't expect I'd beat myself up too badly over whatever happened. (Note: this assumes they make me believe the weapon is real; if I knew it were fake, I'd handle things differently.)

As a side note, a guy I worked with in the military worked as a reserve police officer in CA; he got shot once, during a police raid on a gang. The kid who shot him was 13. My acquaintance hesitated because he thought the kid was too young to have a real gun. He was wrong. Luckily, his vest worked that day.
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Old April 12, 2011, 05:23 PM   #11
therewolf
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IMO, also, you did the right thing.

And if they threatened you, and you put your shots on COM,

well, OP, sorry to say not only that you'd be right again, but

death is the only sure cure for stupid I can think of.

I am an AMERICAN. I WILL die on my feet someday, but until then,

not Saudis, Cowardly Demcrats, Muslims, Russians, Chinese,

NOR local punks are going to make me live on my knees.
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