A late-night fill up for an Arizona man turned into an attempted carjacking at a convenience store in Phoenix.  Authorities say a 19-year old was in his car with his driver’s door open as he was gassing up when two individuals, one armed with a knife, decided to try to carjack the victim.

One of the suspects, a woman, approached the man in an attempt to distract him, while her male accomplice crept up on the intended victim from the back of the car. Not only did their target have the situational awareness to notice the knife-wielding man, the 19-year old was armed and able to protect himself as well.

According to the police, the suspect demanded the 19-year-old’s car.

At that point, the victim got out his handgun and fired shots at the carjacker. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The woman ran away.

The intended victim then entered the convenience store and waited for police to arrive. According to the latest information, the case is still under investigation, but if initial reports are accurate, it seems highly unlikely that this armed citizen will be facing any charges.

In many states, however, the armed citizen would likely be facing charges, simply because of his age. In Arizona, you have to be 21 to carry a firearm concealed, but once you’re 18 you can open carry legally. Across the country, gun control activists are trying to raise the age to own or purchase a firearm. Oddly enough, many of these same activists are actively working to lower the voting age to 16 as well, which seems contradictory to me.

Eighteen-year-old adults have the same right to keep and bear arms as 48-year olds, or should have the same right anyway. Laws preventing gun ownership by young adults are currently being challenged in places like Washington State, where pro-gun groups are suing and some sheriffs are vowing not to enforce a newly enacted law that raises the age to purchase a semi-automatic rifle from 18 to 21. Stories like this provide a real reminder that depriving young adults of their right to keep and bear arms could lead to deadly consequences for unarmed victims.