A woman in Decatur, Illinois who shot her ex in self-defense after he attacked her in her vehicle is now behind bars on $75,000 bond, while her abuser is already back out on the streets.
According to the Herald-Review newspaper, police say the woman was defending herself when she fired the shot from her legally owned firearm, but because she doesn’t have a concealed carry license, she’s now facing a felony charge.
Sgt. Chris Copeland said officers were sent at 6:50 p.m. to HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital in response to the man having been shot in his right side.
Copeland said the woman had several injuries to her face from the man battering her while she was inside of her vehicle. She had a shunt in her head from a previous injury, and a blow to the head could be fatal, Copeland said.
The woman told police she shot the man in self-defense, Copeland said. He said the woman is not facing charges for the shooting, but is facing a preliminary charge of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon for lack of a concealed carry license. She is being held in lieu of $75,000.
Meanwhile the woman’s attacker was given $10,000 bond on charges of domestic battery and vehicular invasion, and according to the local paper he’s already posted bond and is back out on the street. Apparently in Illinois, acting in self-defense with a gun you’re not licensed to carry is a more serious offense than beating a woman in her own car.
In fifteen states, if you can can legally own a gun, you can legally carry it without the need for a government permit or license. In many other states like Florida and Texas, you can have a gun in your vehicle for self-defense without the need for a concealed carry license. Illinois is one of just a handful of states where this woman would face charges for defending herself with her legally owned gun in her own vehicle, and now it’s going to be up to the local State’s Attorney to decide whether to actually bring charges against this domestic violence victim.
My hope is that the prosecutor realizes that justice would not be served by turning a domestic violence victim into a felon because she took action to protect her life. If he does bring charges, I’d ask for a jury trial, because I’d like to think that no juror in their right mind is going to send a woman to prison because she didn’t have a concealed carry license for the gun that saved her life.
If I were a local lawmaker from the Decatur area, I’d be introducing legislation to scrap the requirement that an individual must possess a concealed carry license in order to have a firearm in their vehicle, and this case would be Exhibit A as to why the law needs to change.