An Iowa man who was alarmed by people he assumed to be breaking into his home is the person behind bars now after he apparently followed former Vice President Joe Biden’s dimwitted advice to fire a “two blasts” to scare them away.
Police say a group of people up to no good were chased away by a resident with a shotgun early Friday morning, March 31, 2017.
The incident happened in the 2300 block of Gaines Street around 5:12 a.m. Police say the resident, 30-year-old Brandon Wagner, was asleep and was woke up to the sound of his back door being kicked in.
Wagner grabbed a shotgun and confronted several people on his porch. When they saw the gun, police say they ran from the home. Wagner told police he shot off a round in the air as they were running away and another when they got into a vehicle in the alley and sped off.
Wagner was charged with discharging a firearm in the city limits.
Firing so-called “warning shots” are almost never justified in a self-defense context. You’re either justified in discharging a shot at a deadly force threat, or not justified in firing at all. There’s not much legal middle ground in most jurisdictions, and firing in the air or at someone who is running or driving away is almost always going to result in criminal charges.
Wagner made a critical mistake, and he now faces criminal charges as a result.
Biden, of course, faces no repercussions for his bad advice.