FL man won't face charges for self-defense with AK

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Usually, it seems like the term “Florida man” is followed by something rather bizarre. Things like “Florida Man uses private plane to draw radar penis” or something.

Yes, that’s a real one.

Anyway, Florida is known to produce some odd stories. However, there’s a good one involving a man’s act of self-defense in the Sunshine State.

Florida homeowner will “absolutely not” face charges after firing an “AK-47-style gun” at suspected home invaders, a local sheriff said.

“He started shooting for his own protection, to get them out of his house and to protect himself,” Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons said of the recent shooting in a video address posted to the office’s official Facebook page. 

Simmons said three men, including one armed with a gun, entered a home in Escambia County just ahead of midnight on July 7. The homeowner was present when the three men entered the house and pulled out a handgun from his waistband, but dropped the firearm.

The homeowner was able to run and retrieve another weapon, an “AK-47-style gun,” while one of the suspects picked up the victim’s handgun.

The homeowner then began firing at the suspects before they fled the home.

Police identified two of the suspects. A third was found later with a gunshot wound to the head, though not a fatal one.

And, of course, the fact that he used an AK-pattern rifle and isn’t being charged will likely infuriate many who think such weapons aren’t useful for self-defense.

However, the homeowner here did nothing wrong. After all, this is as clear a case of self-defense as you can imagine.

“But if he could run and get the gun, he could run and get away,” someone might argue, but that’s not necessarily true. Grabbing a gun and exiting a building are completely different actions that don’t necessarily take the same amount of time.

Further, the homeowner shouldn’t have had to try to get away. It was his home. He has a right to defend it from attack, which is what he did.

Three people busted into his home. Acting in self-defense is completely rational.

The sheriff made the right call in determining no charges were warranted. What bothers me, though, is that this was a question that was even asked.

Florida is a Castle Doctrine state. It’s also a Stand Your Ground state. Nothing in those regulations suggests that charges are warranted, regardless of the weapon used.

However, I’ll note that if I’m facing three brazen attackers like this homeowner is, my handgun won’t be my preferred weapon of choice. Instead, it would be a long gun with a detachable magazine and a 30-round capacity. In other words, something like the AK the homeowner actually used.

He acted in self-defense and, in my opinion, used the proper tool for the job.

The only criticism I’d offer is for the homeowner to drill with weapon draws so they don’t lose their handgun and arm the bad guys next time, but that’s relatively mild criticism. I don’t know what else may have contributed, nor do I care. He took care of business and stayed alive, and that’s the big thing.