It’s not often that the national news media bothers to cover defensive gun uses, but the fact that these stories are mostly ignored doesn’t mean they aren’t happening. Across the country legal gun owners are protecting themselves and others every day, and while major news outlets might not find these stories important (or useful, if they’re actively pushing an anti-gun agenda), that’s not the case here at Bearing Arms.
Take this story from Phoenix, Arizona, for example.
Police say an attempted carjacking was stopped by people nearby and the suspect got shot in Maryvale on Wednesday morning. It happened around 8 a.m. at a parking lot near 83th Avenue and Encanto Boulevard, which is north of McDowell Road.
Phoenix Police Sgt. Phillip Krynsky said a man was trying to steal a car when a group intervened and the man was shot. He was taken to the hospital with a life-threatening injury.
Even the local news stations in Phoenix barely covered this story, despite a pretty compelling storyline. Who were the folks who saw the attempted carjacking and decided to intervene? Did they know the intended victim, and was that victim injured in any way by the carjacker? I wish I could tell you, but after the initial report on Wednesday there doesn’t appear to have been any follow up by any of the local stations in the city, not even to identify the carjacking suspect.
We know a little more about an attempted home invasion in rural Iowa that was thwarted by a homeowner early Thursday.
Investigators say their received a 911 call from the homeowner around 4:30 a.m. saying he had just shot someone who tried tried to break into his home. The homeowner awoke to unusual noises and then heard glass breaking before he found the person trying to enter the home through a broken window.
An Adair County deputy and officers from the Stuart, Iowa police department were already in the area, investigating the crash of a vehicle on Interstate 80 near the Adair rest area. The deputy found the vehicle abandoned around 3:18 a.m. in the median.
Investigators say the vehicle had been reported as stolen to the Omaha Police Department.
The suspect was airlifted to a Des Moines hospital with multiple gunshot wounds, but there’s been no word on his status since. Sheriff’s officials in Adair County say the homeowner was uninjured during the attempted home invasion, and isn’t expected to face any charges.
Police in Detroit also say a homeowner who shot and killed a man trying to break into his home will not face charges. Maiso Jackson said he woke up around 4:30 Tuesday morning to the sound of a man banging on his front door and repeatedly ringing his doorbell. Jackson says the man was demanding money owed to him by someone, but after Jackson was unable to convince the man he had the wrong home, he ended up calling police. While they were en route, Jackson says the stranger went to the side of his home and smashed a window to gain entry.
Fearing the destruction wouldn’t stop, Jackson armed himself.
“I came outside and said you have to leave, you can’t be doing this,” he said. “So then he reached for his gun and pulled it out. I had to defend myself, I had to shoot him because of that.”
Jackson fired four shots, hitting the man in the chest killing him.
“It was me or him at that point,” he said. “I didn’t want to hurt nobody, but he just wouldn’t quit.”
When police did arrive, Jackson says he followed their orders, and was led away in handcuffs for questioning. Knowing he was a lawful gun owner, he said he was aware that police had an investigation to do.
“I was just in shock, he wouldn’t leave. He tried to kill me and I didn’t do nothing to the guy,” Jackson said. “That’s the part that’s kind of sad.”
Jackson was initially taken into custody by police, but was released without charges a few hours later. While prosecutors are still reviewing the case, all evidence appears to fall in line with Jackson’s recounting of the terrifying incident, and as long as that remains the case I don’t see any charges being filed.
I will say that of the three armed citizen stories documented above, the Fox affiliate in Detroit did by far the best job in fleshing out the details of the incident, including speaking to the homeowner and sharing his story on camera. I understand that not every armed citizen who defended themselves against a violent attacker is going to be willing to sit down with the press afterwards, but the media can do a better job of covering these defensive gun uses than, say, the scant attention the Phoenix press gave to an armed citizen coming to the aid of a carjacking victim.