Armed citizens have reportedly thwarted at least 12 instances of crime by use of a gun in August and September only. These plotted crimes and attacks were stopped mainly by a licensed firearm holder firing their gun or simply showing it to the attacker.
Here are a few instances across the country where armed people opened fire on the suspect.
An 80-year-old man, Craig Cope, was all alone in his liquor store in California when an armed robber tried to attack him in August. He scared the robber off by firing his shotgun. “I would always protect my employees, my customers, myself. This instance fortunately, I was here by myself, so I only had to worry about that. I took care of it, and that was that,” Craig told CBS LA.
In the same month, an employee at a gas station fired and killed a suspected robber who wanted to attack him. A similar situation happened in September when a gas station clerk shot dead a suspected bandit in San Antonio. Additionally, a cashier in a convenience store in Florida stopped an attack by showing off his weapon in Florida in September.
A concealed carry holder reportedly ended a carjacking in Chicago when he opened fire in a firing spree. Reports indicate that the suspect was left in a critical condition in this incident that happened in August.
In September, a homeowner in California shot dead an intruder. The attacker was fighting with the homeowner’s husband when she came to protect him. In the same month, another burglary suspect was shot and killed in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
These were just a few reported incidents when gun holders saved lives by stopping crimes.
This comes when several states, such as New York, have started a severe crackdown on firearms. Governor Kathy Hochul passed a law that banned citizens from carrying guns in Times Square and other public places like schools, restaurants, theaters, parks, and transit systems, among other “sensitive locations.”
“This whole concept that a good guy with a gun will stop the bad guys with a gun doesn’t hold up. And the data bears this out, so that theory is over,” Hochul said before signing the legislation in September.
Philadelphia state followed suit at the end of September when Mayor Jim Kennedy signed an executive order that would see guns banned at recreational facilities like playgrounds to prevent crime. “We will not tolerate the endangerment of children and families while they are in the care of our treasured community spaces, and we must do everything we can to protect the public, as well as the dedicated staff that make these facilities run,” said Mayor Kennedy. This order comes after Tiffany Fletcher was killed in a gang gun battle.
Gun control advocacy groups have widely celebrated such moves as “massive wins” for gun control in 2022.
However, John Lott, the Prime Prevention Research Center founder, had a contrary opinion stating that gun-free zones put law-abiding citizens at risk. “There have been no problems in Philadelphia with concealed handgun permit holders that justify the mayor’s gun-free zones. In banning guns, the people who will obey the ban are the law-abiding permit holders,” Said Lott in an interview with Fox News Digital.
“The ban actually serves as a magnet for criminals as they know their victims will be defenseless in those areas. But it is even worse because law-abiding people will now be defenseless going to or from those gun-free zones. Concealed handgun permits have been soaring in Philadelphia because crime is out of control and the city can’t protect people.” He added.
Lott also noted that in Tiffany Fletcher’s case, not even a single gang member was a carry permit holder. He referred to an article he wrote in 2021 that highlighted how armed Americans stopped mass shootings in different situations.
“Americans who look only at the daily headlines would be surprised to learn that, according to academic estimates, defensive gun uses — including instances when guns are simply shown to deter a crime — are four to five times more common than gun crimes, and far more frequent than the roughly 20,000 murders or fewer each year, with or without a gun. But even when they prevent mass public shootings, defensive uses rarely get national news coverage,” Lott explained to Real Clear Investigations.
Defensive gun uses witnessed in 2021 have also been seen this year.
A homeowner opened fire on an intruder on a Sunday morning in September in Oregon. The intruder was killed instantly. Another armed robber was shot dead by a bystander in West Palm Beach, Florida, after attempting a shooting spree at a family gathering.
In Illinois, a mayor’s security detail stopped an attempted attack on a man outside an Apple Store in Chicago. The security officer opened fire on the attacker in the event dated September.
In the same month of September, A popcorn store owner shot a suspect, ending an armed robbery attack, while a jewelry seller in California stopped an armed robbery by shooting at the attackers in self-defense.
The 12 occasions where licensed firearm holders stopped a plotted attack are probably the few instances that the media reported on. There’s a possibility that several similar cases went unreported.
Professor Gary Mauser from Simon Fraser University in Canada told Real Clear Investigations that the firearm was never fired in the first place in most cases where a crime was thwarted. “National surveys find that firearms are rarely fired when used to stop a violent attack. Such cases are unlikely to be reported to the police and even less likely to be found in media stories. Relying upon media stories would greatly underestimate the true number of defensive gun uses,” He said.