View Full Version : I am completely appalled...

August 31, 2001, 01:31 PM
I just called up a local gun range that I have never been to yet. I asked if they had a sig p228 available for rent. The lady who answered the phone told me yes, but that they don't allow single persons to rent and shoot. You must come with 2 people at least.

I asked why. She said it's suicide prevention.

What is the world coming to?

By the way, here is the web address for that business. Feel free to contact them and let them know how you feel about this!


122 Minnis Circle
Milpitas, Ca. 95035
Telephone: 408-263-7468
Facsimile: 408-263-3547

August 31, 2001, 01:47 PM
Firing Line range (no connection to TFL)in SoCal has the same policy (only a party of two can rent), as I learned when I recently arrived there ready to sample some 1911s. They didn't explain the reason for their policy, however, when I asked them, just said it was for "liability reasons." I wonder how many suicides go this route. Actually, I did hear of one recently at a range up in Klakamas County, OR.

August 31, 2001, 01:47 PM
I was told the same thing a few weeks ago. As a newbie, I never thought of it, but I guess it makes some sort of sick twisted sense...

August 31, 2001, 02:07 PM
I support the right of a private business owner to fully exercise his property rights by setting any policy he wishes, even if it is stupid, imprudent, misguided or ineffectual. I equally support the right of his customers to express their objections and suggestions, as well as to vote with their feet. It's all about freedom and personal choice.

August 31, 2001, 02:08 PM
There was a suicide at a local range this year. It does happen. And you can't blame somebody for not wanting it to happen in their establishment.

And I have been to Target Masters (My wife is from Milipitas). They seemed like a really nice bunch of guys.

August 31, 2001, 02:23 PM
It really upsets the range owner when someone commits suicide at their range. I have a good friend who runs a range here in Utah and it happened at his range a few months ago. Bad business for all concerned, especially the poor slob that has to clean up the mess.

August 31, 2001, 02:40 PM
I still don't see how this rule prevents a suicide. I've seen quite a few suicide attempts and if they want to do it, they're gonna do it.

The only thing this rule brings to mind is the term, "murder/suicide".

"No honey, I'm not mad at you anymore. In fact, why don't you come shooting with me so we can have some quality time together...............":rolleyes:

August 31, 2001, 03:10 PM
I ran into that in Denver a few months ago. (I was there for a class and wanted to shoot one evening.) While I didn't like not getting to shoot, I can see their point of view. With today's lawsuit society, businesses (especially gun related) have to go to extremes to protect themselves.

I would think that someone contemplating suicide is not going to want to do it with a buddy around so I can see this working, as far as protecting the shop. Is the person going to find another way, yes they will.

My two cents worth.


August 31, 2001, 04:08 PM
The range I go to in the Bay Area (Jackson Arms) has a similar policy. You can still rent if you're by yourself as long as you bring a gun of your own -- it makes sense, in a sad kind of way.


August 31, 2001, 04:19 PM
I used to shoot at targetmasters quite a bit. I believe two people shot themselves there in the last few years--either the Milpitas location, or their other one, in the east bay. With all of the bad gun press in CA, i would highly doubt that they would remove the policy. On the flip side, they do have quite a good selection of guns to shoot/test, should be searching for a new purchase.

August 31, 2001, 04:45 PM
This one was just posted on the General Discussion Forum. Another possible gun range suicide...


August 31, 2001, 05:00 PM
Bullseye Indoor Range in San Rafael, CA had that policy, they still might. They had two suicides in like a year so they require multiple people to rent a gun. Since the owner knows me, he makes an exception for when I want to rent.

Now that I live closer to Montana Hawk (in Cotati, CA), I go there to shoot more often now. Again, the owner there knows me to so I've never had a problem renting a gun while alone. It really helps to get to know the owners, as once they trust you they usually don't give a flying duck if you rent alone or not. ;)

August 31, 2001, 05:49 PM
This happens more than we would like to think. I know a guy who owns a range in Manchester, NH who has someone kill themselves on the range within the last few months.


August 31, 2001, 06:05 PM
Probation officer friend of mine said the range in San Luis Obispo (or Atascadero) had a suicide with a rented gun.

August 31, 2001, 07:19 PM
That policy will not prevent single suicide. There was a double suicide at Caswell's indoor range in Mesa around eight years ago. They tried the same thing for a while. Then two guys come in, rent guns, start shooting and then one of them leaves the line to get some more ammo. The other guy then shoots himself in the head. They dropped the policy because it didn't stop the bodies from hitting the deck. (That and business was off)

S.F. 1357
August 31, 2001, 10:13 PM
I am from the same area and from my understanding they have that policy due to the laws within their municipality. You might want to ask them just to clarify. From talking to the people who work there, they were the ones who actually had the suicide in one of their lanes.

August 31, 2001, 11:45 PM
The range I go to (Wade's Eastside (http://www.wadesguns.com)), had 2 people commit suicide within 5 days last year. They instituted a similar policy. They will only rent guns to a single individual if they have their own gun with them already. Call the range back and ask them if they will rent to you, if you bring a personal gun in with you.

See these stories for more info here (http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis/web/vortex/display?slug=wades08m&date=20001208&query=range+suicide) and here (http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis/web/vortex/display?slug=nogun15m&date=20001215&query=range+suicide).

Hope this helps...


don't shoot it's me
September 1, 2001, 12:17 AM
Asking to buy one bullet is a dead giveaway...

September 1, 2001, 12:33 AM
I used to live up that way and shot there a lot. They have had several people kill themselves after renting guns. Their was a lot of "public outcry" demanding that they closed down. The owner is just trying to avoid being shut down by the city.

P.S. National Shooting Club in Santa Clara has the same policy. I believe only one guy killed himself there.

Jim March
September 1, 2001, 01:53 AM
...as others have noted.

If you want to try out a particular gun, no sweat, just bring a decent piece with you you already own, caliber .38Spl or above so it's obvious you don't "need" their gun.

It's not "gun culture" people doing this crap; as long as you already own at least one decent handgun, you're not affected.

El Rojo
September 1, 2001, 02:51 AM
I like living in the boonies. I can shoot as much as I want, wherever I want, and for as free as I want. Screw this paying to watch people blow their brains out. I am sure it happens very rarely, but it just makes firing ranges sound more and more like a place I want to avoid. I think I will stick to national match and palma ranges. That way if someone wants to wax themselves with their custom bolt rifle, we can auction it off afterwards.

September 1, 2001, 08:53 AM
Lemme see.... the guy WITHOUT the gun is supposed to stop the guy WITH the gun from killing himself?

Somebody else can volunteer for THAT duty.

This country is getting so f****d up....

Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2001, 09:08 AM
I certainly don't blame the ranges one bit. I don't think their logic is that the extra person will stop the attempted suicide, but that a person is less likely to commit suicide in front of a friend or family member. Of course if the person is not in their right mind, having someone there won't matter and it may be that the suicidal person shoots the friend first.

Many years ago, the manager of our business sold a handgun to a woman. She explained that her husband travelled quite a bit and this left her at home, somewhat isolated in the country. A new reservoir was going in and so there was a lot of construction people out in her remote portion of the county and she didn't feel safe with being alone and having all those strangers around who might wish to take advantage of the isolated homestead. The manager helped her select a gun, went over all of the features with her, and explained that she should not point the gun at anything she did not intend to destroy and that shooting was a worst case scenario. She understood and was able to show that she knew how to manipulate the gun and its safety features. She filled out the paperwork and left with her gun.

She drove to the next town and bought a box of ammo for the gun (we don't sell ammo). She then drove to a local mall parkinglot and ventilated her head. A suicide note was left in the car. Our manager went through several interviews with the police and ATF because selling a gun to a person who is distraught or upset, drunk or stoned, or otherwise not in their right mind is illegal. Part of what kept our license from being pulled and our manager from having to deal with some serious legal time was that everything the woman said about her home situation was absolutely correct and she had expressed her fears to others prior to that time. The husband did travel as well and was actually away when the incident took place.

There is no way to stop goal oriented suicidal people from doing themselves in, but for people who run ranges and rent guns, they can certainly do whatever they feel is right in order to prevent such things from happening at their ranges. There is a considerable amount of mental hardship that goes along with the legal woes when you realize that you just sold or rented a gun to a person who committed suicide or killed someone.

September 1, 2001, 10:03 AM
"It's not gun culture people doing that".

I never thought of REAL Americans as a separate "Culture", with a monniker to boot....................

Guess WE have been tagged, and we are it!!!!!!!!!

PS, Glad to be a member of the GUN CULTURE.................

Wonder if we can ask for special rights, and ethnicity status?????;)

September 1, 2001, 11:16 AM
You have the right to be fingerprinted, photographed and registered with the brave men and women of integrity you have elected to be your rulers.

September 1, 2001, 11:38 AM
Another good thing gone bad. Let's just be glad that you can still rent guns at some ranges.

7th Fleet
September 1, 2001, 05:06 PM
Asking to buy one bullet is a dead giveaway,>>>>>>>>>>>>

We had a suicide here where the guy had to shoot himself twice. The first round he shot into his chest and he was still alive, the next round went into his head, it was with a .22 pistol.


Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2001, 10:40 PM
Posted on another TFL thread dealing with a possible gun range suicide:


The original story is here...

Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2001, 10:48 PM
Here is a link to a gun range suicide using a rented gun...

September 1, 2001, 11:20 PM
Imagine being on the firing line when that happened :eek: !

I haven't witnessed any suicides, but I have seen a scuffle between two shooters. All the people on the line were flexing their gun which made for quite a sketchy situation.

September 2, 2001, 02:20 AM
Well Etron, what would you expect from the bay area? I was born and raised in Fremont so I know what you're going through. I feel for you.

I'm courious though...Do you have to have 2 people to rent a range and shoot with your OWN gun there? Seems to me, if they were really worried about suicides, then they would have this policy as well. If not, then I guess the owners are just worried about being sued for having their gun as the weapon.

September 2, 2001, 04:58 AM
Total coincidence, but I was THERE when you called (at least I think I was, if it was 11:30 a.m. or so on Friday). I live in Milpitas, less than 2 miles from TM, and my BIL and I were there to pattern our shotguns (they let you do that on the 17 yd range). FWIW, the lady that took the call and the two guys working there at the time were discussing your call. Rather than calling you names or whatever most "store" people usually do, they were genuinely concerned about how to answer this question that evidently comes up a lot.

Like the others have said, there have been several range suicides there and at other local ranges in the last few years, and this policy may help to counteract that. Unfortunately, I had a good friend back in Ohio who's mother took her life in this same fashion, so I know first hand that it happens (RIP, Marti).

Target Masters is a good range, the folks that work there know their stuff and are helpful. When I moved here two years ago, I was delighted that there was a range so near my house in Kali, that had some nice pieces to try out...all along with reasonable range fees to boot.

I totally support their policy if they feel it will help preserve their business, as I appreciate that they are there. Also, FWIW, their policy used to be the "rent if you bring in your own reasonable gun"...obviously that has changed, but they have never NOT rented the 9mm Sig that I covet to me when I let them hold my POS .38 spl. Maybe because they know me as a regular customer, who knows?

Another note. Find a girl that likes guns. Thursday's at TM's is great. I take my wife there on Thursday evenings where they give women free range time and FREE rentals of any gun they want. As the "dude" you pay 4 bucks to share the lane and you and your honey can shoot all night. My wife is partial to the .40 S&W, but I love her anyway ;-)

This is my longest post ever, but, if you need to go and rent a gun, shoot me an e-mail, and I'll shoot with you...just don't off yourself unless I'm in the other room, ok? :-)

Milpitas, Ka

P.S. Here is the direct link to their site:


Double Naught Spy
September 2, 2001, 09:33 AM
Bronco61, yes, most ranges will let people who bring their own guns shoot by themselves even when they won't let a single individual rent a gun and shoot. The suicide issue concerns people who don't have firearms that rent them for suicide. I am sure a lot of the people would choose not to commit suicide at the range if the ranges would rent guns and let people take them home. Of course, that isn't going to happen.

People who already own guns really don't need to go somewhere like a gun range to commit suicide because they already have access to all the components they need for the job. That isn't to say that a person who owns guns won't commit suicide on a gun range, only that they don't need to go to the range to get access to guns for the purpose.