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Old February 13, 2012, 03:40 AM   #34
Senior Member
Join Date: November 28, 2004
Location: Silicon Valley, Ca
Posts: 7,117
Originally Posted by KBP
This is the big question with carrying a gun. Claiming the average citizen cannot act right when carrying a gun also strains credibility and does a disservice to those that carry!
Please understand that I didn't say that a civilian cannot act legally when SHTF when carrying. What I said was that in a life & death situation, it is unreasonable to expect someone to act in a calm, deliberate and perfectly lawful manner. There is a difference.

For example; In Sacramento about 10 years ago, an intoxicated patron caused a ruckus. The bartender and bouncer showed him out the door. The patron threatened that he would "come back and kill everyone in the bar" and that he would start with the two employees. Now, their S.O.P. would be get his license and report to the police and let them handle it. Instead, this intoxicated "genius" grabbed a large scuba-diving knife from his car and charged the bouncer, then charged the bartender (and part owner of the bar) standing in the doorway. The bartender drew his S&W .40 pistol and drilled two holes in the guy. Sounds justifiable to me. The surveillance video from outside, however created a problem. When the guy charged the bouncer, the bartender stepped out of the doorway to draw, putting his left foot (and himself) "in public place". He "straddled" the threshold of the door, but the prosecutor split the hair and charged him with unlawful CCW and homicide (on the theory that the drunk might not have actually entered the bar).[¹]

Such fine, hair-line distinctions are what I mean. Experts all agree that life & death crises create tunnel vision, auditory exclusions and time and distance distortions. In moments of heightened danger it is unreasonable to expect a citizen to maintain total situational awareness of "fine legalistic details".

In incidents of police fratricide during a gunfight, most agencies call it a "tragic mistake" or "an unfortunate incident", even when the officer is in a patrol uniform. Unfortunately, prosecutors seem quick to attribute evil intent to citizens who make the same error under the same stress (or more).

I'm not excusing the tire shop manager's behavior. I'm only saying that there is sufficient "reasonable doubt" on his part that the man was a police officer.

¹ A coworker served on the jury and related it to me. They acquitted.
BillCA in CA (Unfortunately)
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