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Old January 30, 2005, 11:24 PM   #1
Metellus
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Handgun Suicide

I shoot twice a week with my girlfriend. On Sunday a group of my friends joined me. Some of them were shooting for the first time. We had semis, revolvers, carbines, shotguns, etc.. so we were having fun.

A white gentleman in his early 40s with a baseball cap was shooting in a lane to our left. He fired off a couple magazines, looked over the results of his target, neatly packed his stuff in a bag, walked behind us, and then shot himself in the head.

Hearing a shot behind the firing line (as opposed to the side of us where you'd normally hear shots) made the group turn around just in time to see a very large exit wound that blew the top of the man's head off, brain matter splattered in his cap that was a couple feet away from the body, and a very dark pool of blood starting to creep across the floor. There was much screaming from the women who were shooting directly the to sides of the man.

The range master told all of us to put our weapons down and told us to wait in the front of the range. Emergency Medical refused to come until Fairfax County police came out to secure the scene. A medivac chopper was flown in and the cops took eyewitness reports.

Needless to say everyone in my group was shook up both the long time and new shooters. Shooting to us is a sport and even though we have concealed handgun permits the last thing we ever want to see is some dude's head splattered on the ground next to our feet.

Many of us were also shook up thinking what if the guy wanted to take some of us with him or his fatal bullet somehow struck one of us instead of just the ceiling.

It is very sad to see a life end. I'm sure the guy was going through a rough time and people going through bad times don't think straight. It is unfortunate that this guy let it get to him and he decided to end it.

I recognized the guy as a regular shooter. This wasn't some depressed guy who randomly went to the range to rent his first gun and fire his first and only shot to end his life. This was a guy who shot regularly and shot himself with his own handgun. Why did he have to come to the range to end his life? Why not at his home? I guess he felt at home at the range or maybe he wanted the attention of room full of people?

Who really knows but even though I love my firearms this is one very sobering experience. Handguns no matter how comfortable you get with them are ultimately designed to kill people and they do a very good job at that.
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:32 PM   #2
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I hope I never have to witness such an incident at the firing range. It would be weird going back. Oh yea right over there is where that guy blew his head off.... :barf:

As far as why people do that. I suppose if you're feeling that low you're not really worried about ruining other people's days. I always try to keep an eye on things while at the range, but you can't watch everyone all the time while you're trying to shoot. That's why I prefer it when there's not many people there. Too many idiots in the world. Range idiots are a common breed and all it takes is one to ruin your life or end it.

I carry open for deterrent and other reasons.
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:37 PM   #3
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wow. that is a pretty powerful eyewitness story. we had a good friend of the family commit suicide on the phone with his girlfriend that just left him. A very hard time for our family. He had come to my parents house just the week before, maybe he already had planned it and wanted to see his friends one last time before he went.

My guess is that this man loved to shoot, and wanted to shoot one last time. While he had already fired many rounds, the gun being in his hand, it wasnt too hard to immediately bring it to his own head. You are home alone with your gun, sometimes you dont even want to touch it because you just dont shoot in your home.

I think also shooting those last rounds was a release for him.

I think you will be forever haunted by what you saw, and I feel sorry for you. I know I would be. I really feel for his family, nobody deserves to go through that.
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:39 PM   #4
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Ugly stuff...

I can't answer any of the questions in your second-to-last paragraph. I can tell you that as a veteran cop, I have been to plenty of suicides involving everything from .22's through 12 gauges, and on up through .30-06's & 7mm mags. A couple were at conversational distance, when we were trying to talk the guy out of it.

It ain't pretty, and I'm sorry you folks had to witness it. I still don't know why some people feel the need to make their self-appointed exit into eternity into a public spectacle. It is a sad, sad thing.
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:41 PM   #5
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so what happens to the gun and stuff in a situation like that????
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:41 PM   #6
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Just a thought.....maybe it was a stupid accident. Did anyone actually see him do it?
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:45 PM   #7
Ala Dan
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Very Sad Incident Indeed

I feel sorry for the gentleman, his family, and loved ones. Its a tragic
event when one reaches the point to end their own lives. Even the
worst set of circumstances don't warrant the action he chose to take.
With a little fore thought and GOD's help, any problem can be over
come.

Best Wishes,
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:51 PM   #8
Metellus
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Guns..

The cops took ALL the guns being shot at the range as evidence. My guess is they want to verify it wasn't some type of murder. The entrance wound was under the chin and the exit was the top of the head. I think it was a suicide.

Nobody saw the guy pull the trigger since we were all busy trying to shoot paper targets. The range does have a video camera in the range so that will probably show what happened.

It could have been an accident but again the entrance wound was below the chin and the exit was to top of the head. Not sure how that could have been done by accident but possible. I did notice his weapon had its slide back in the locked position meaning there was only 1 round left in the chamber and none in the magazine when he shot himself.

So could he have not realized there was one round left in the gun and somehow while putting it away it went off right under his chin? i would hope not because that'd make me scared of touching my handguns for awhile.
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Old January 30, 2005, 11:52 PM   #9
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all i can say about that guy is..... what an *******
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
The cops took ALL the guns being shot at the range as evidence.

It's through this kind of mindlessness that cops create resentment. Some of them are just too thickheaded to realize it.
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:12 AM   #11
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Quote:
The cops took ALL the guns being shot at the range as evidence. My guess is they want to verify it wasn't some type of murder. The entrance wound was under the chin and the exit was the top of the head. I think it was a suicide.
See, this is where I'll get pissed off and not feel sorry for the fool. Now I have to give up MY guns to be handled by some stranger who does not care how they're handled and to be kept in some locker.

If there is anybody out there planning to off themselves. Please do so in the privacy of your own home. I don't care about you, I will not be impressed by your stupidity and I don't want to be exposed to your blood and gore which could be diseased.

Rant off
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:13 AM   #12
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Quote:
I don't care about you
Maybe some people should start caring about other people.

Rant off
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:21 AM   #13
txinvestigator
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Were these rental guns the cops took? I would have been arrested had they tried to confiscate, I mean take mine for eividence without a warrant.
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:26 AM   #14
joab
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I normally stay far away from suicide threads, but it's late and I'm in one of my moods.

Why did he do it ?
Because he is a self centered coward.
These people could not possibly care less what effect their actions have on others because they are the only ones that matter and if the going gets a little too tough they check out with absolutely no regard for those that have to find them or the family that they leave behind to deal with it.

Research has proven that people related to suicide clowns are far more likely to do it themselves especially younger sibling or children.

If my comments are too harsh or if they offend someone who was left behind I deeply apologize.
But I have had the pleasure of finding three of these jerks myself and had to deal with a female coworker that found an especially grisly scene. She quit what could have been a promising carreer because of it.

I have also had to deal with the aftermath on a personal level
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:38 AM   #15
Tim R
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TXinvesg.....I think in the heat of the moment you would have handed your over like the rest of the people. A warrant should have been coming shortly after things were figured out. I mean you didn't shoot him did you?
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:39 AM   #16
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To ooh or ahh about suicide is to simply encourage it. I have no sympathy for those who commit suicide. I do however have sympathy for the survivors.

If the dead knucklehead wanted to make a statement, he should have made a verbal one to a counselor.

Larry
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Old January 31, 2005, 12:43 AM   #17
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UH? I am not sure about this. There was a suidide at the range post recently at 1911Forum. A link to a news story might be able to allay my doubts.
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Old January 31, 2005, 01:09 AM   #18
txinvestigator
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim R
TXinvesg.....I think in the heat of the moment you would have handed your over like the rest of the people. A warrant should have been coming shortly after things were figured out. I mean you didn't shoot him did you?
No Tim. I am a former cop, and familiar with proper and legal procedures for investigating such a case, and I have seen gory scenes before.

You separate the witnesses, get statements and serial #s of the other guns if you need. A simple ballistics test would establish that the dead guys gun did the shooting.

The others in the range could be asked to go to the police station for a sample if needed.

I am not going to give my $1k gun to the police to be torn up unless they have a warrant or I am suspect.
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Old January 31, 2005, 01:14 AM   #19
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UH? I am not sure about this. There was a suidide at the range post recently at 1911Forum. A link to a news story might be able to allay my doubts.
Yea, I wouldn't mind seeing a link to an article or two either..

Where did this happen?
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Old January 31, 2005, 01:28 AM   #20
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Wow man I cant even imagine seeing something like that. I also hear you guys on not wanting your guns mishandled and kept in an evidence locker. my guns to me are like a prized car would be to a gear head. I try to keep them in the best possible condition and look at the little scratches that occasionally occur with a sort of ohhh man view. Suicide is cowardise but I also believe and wonder at what point is life so bad that you want it to over. Personally seeing the sun come up while duck hunting. or seeing the woods wake up and go to sleep, makes it all worth it for me. But offing yourself its like your being cheated out of seeing as many of the great things that God has put here.

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Old January 31, 2005, 05:01 AM   #21
Robert Garner
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cowardace?

Uncle, Korean War Vet;
Spent last 20+ yrs w/shrapnel and plates in his head.
EVERY day of which was a torment of pain that was not treatable
Why we dont want to CREATE an addict do we?
With his children grown and gone,
he checked out, in the back yard, so he wouldnt make a mess.
Sorry but I don't consider Him a coward

from Kipling w/apologies

When you're lying on Afghans plains
and their women come out to cut up
what remains

Just roll to your rifle
and blow out your brains
and go to your God
like a soldier

We never quite know what another
has going on ,do we?

If this seems maudlin,sorry
robert
occupied Georgia
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Old January 31, 2005, 05:04 AM   #22
txinvestigator
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Robert. Nice share
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Old January 31, 2005, 07:21 AM   #23
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Cowardice
Girlfriend left him and he didn't get the job he wanted, rolled to his shotgun and blew out his brains in the middle of his bed. Found by unsuspecting 21 year old girl.

Cowardice
21 year old unwed father with custody of his daughter.
No job, didn't feel connected to any of the 10 or so women he was screwing, stuck in a dead end job because of his work ethic.
Went to his mother's swallowed a bunch of pills while watching TV, found by his 14 year old sister. 10 bucks says she next.

Cowardice
Politician caught in another scandal blows his brains out on national TV while at a press conference

For every example of a seemingly justifiable suicide there are 1000 example of typical losers saying "hey look at me, I gonna show the world just how much of a loser the world has made me"
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Old January 31, 2005, 07:59 AM   #24
ISP2605
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"No Tim. I am a former cop, and familiar with proper and legal procedures for investigating such a case, and I have seen gory scenes before."

I'd expect someone who is a former cop to have more sense and knowledge than this. Being "former" really doesn't tell much of anything. Lots of "former" and current cops who've never handled much more than an injury crash.
What happens if ballistics comes back and none of his weapons match? Good luck trying to run down everyone's guns, particularly if someone else did the shooting. You really think they'd keep their gun around and not alter it?
As a current cop, who has been at it for almost 34 yrs, investigated hundreds of shooting cases, and collected a lot of evidence, once you leave the scene the evidence is gone. Collect it up front. You most likely will never get another chance. Everyone there should have gotten a receipt for their property which will be returned.
And if you want a warrant, not a problem. A warrant could be gotten. So do you want to hang around there for a few hours while the warrant is signed? And in cases such as these a judge would sign the warrant, without question.
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Old January 31, 2005, 08:00 AM   #25
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Paper Lions
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