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Indiana Armed Citizen Gifted New Gun After Police Took His During DGU Investigation

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

Kudos to Indiana TV station WTHI for covering the story of an Indiana man who was forced to use his gun in self-defense, only be left unarmed after local police took his pistol during their investigation. 

It was just a few weeks ago that May and his girlfriend were returning home from a night out on the town when he realized that he was being followed by someone in a pickup truck. Once he pulled into his driveway, May grabbed his gun, told his girlfriend to stay put, and exited his Corvette to see what was going on. 

Almost as soon as his feet hit the pavement, May says he heard the driver of the truck let out a "battle cry" as he stomped on the accelerator. May ended up jumping on the hood of the truck, firing multiple rounds through the windshield. That's when a barenaked man threw open the driver's side door of the truck and ran out into the darkness. 35-year-old Dustin Roecker was found a short time later suffering from several gunshot wounds, and he's been recovering in the hospital while prosecutors have filed multiple charges against him. 

Though May was never viewed by authorities as the aggressor in the case, his firearm was still seized by the Terra Haute police as part of their investigation. May will get his gun back at some point, but it may very well be after Roecker's criminal case is resolved. In the meantime, May is recovering from several injuries sustained in the attack, including a broken leg, and has been unable to return to work since the incident on April 20th. One local gun store, however, has stepped up to ensure he at least has the means to protect himself while he's getting back on his feet.

May went to 'TopGuns' in Terre Haute, where he was gifted a gun free of charge.

May says that this entire ordeal has re-affirmed his belief in self defense. "I would carry my gun occasionally, if I felt the need. I usually kept it in my vehicle. Since this attack I am looking to carry full time at this point, because clearly you never know what is going to happen. So I definitely want to be prepared next time," says May.

That's a wise decision by May, and some excellent earned media on the part of TopGuns. I'd also encourage May (and every other gun owner) to take any guns inside with you at night rather than leaving it in the car. You never know who's going to show up in your driveway, after all. It could be a naked dude who tries to run you over, but it's more likely going to be one more people interested in taking anything of value inside your vehicle. 

As for the naked man who did show up at May's house, police say the suspect was a busy man that Saturday night. A little more than an hour before May was attacked in his driveway, police in Terra Haute were called out to a Culver's restaurant for a reported hit-and-run. The victim told officers that a red pickup had been circling the parking lot and accelerated into him, throwing him into the air and onto the pavement. Police were still at the local hospital interviewing the victim when dispatchers directed them to May's house. 

After May had given a statement and was taken to the hospital to have his injuries treated, police began searching the neighborhood for the suspect. While they were looking, the Indiana State Police informed officers that they were pursuing a stolen Kia, a tip that eventually led them to Roecker. 

Deputies said they later learned the suspect stole a vehicle from a nearby home. 

Police eventually stopped the suspect, a man they identified as Dustin Roecker. When police stopped him, they found him inside of the Kia with multiple gunshot wounds. Roecker was airlifted to an Indianapolis hospital due to his injuries. 

Police learned the truck Roecker was allegedly driving during the incident at Culver's and at May's home was reported stolen from Owen County. 

Roecker was charged with:

  • Attempted Murder
  • Criminal Recklessness with a vehicle resulting in serious bodily injury (two counts)
  • Reckless driving resulting in serious bodily injury (two counts)
  • Resisting law enforcement
  • Vehicle theft (two counts)
  • Battery with a dangerous object

Authorities still haven't said what might have motivated Roecker to allegedly carry out the two assaults, but he's already been ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation. 

Unlike the media coverage of most defensive gun uses, which generally merits a brief mention on a newscast or two before its completely forgotten by reporters, WTHI has done a great job in covering May's ordeal from the beginning. One note to whoever is writing the headlines, however: it was a "vicious attack", not a "viscous attack" that Ron May defended himself against. May's assailant might not have been wearing pants, but it wasn't Winnie the Pooh throwing a pot of honey that caused May to draw his gun and open fire in self-defense.