As reported, an 18 year old criminal who had already accumulated a lengthy police record entered a Miami Burger King, wearing a ski mask and black gloves. He then threatened the lives of the employees behind the counter with a handgun, while demanding money. A citizens with a concealed carry permit drew his pistol, and order the robber to put down his gun. The robber refused, and opened fire on the citizen, inflicting serious but non fatal injures. The citizen returned fire, killing the robber. My thoughts are below:
I would like to first congratulate this armed citizen on stepping up to defend himself and everyone in the restaurant from the armed and violent criminal. I also wish him a speedy recovery from his injuries.
As I’ve said before, I generally think that it is unwise to second guess crime victims who have defended themselves, due to the fact that they face a high stress, life or death situation, and their judgment should therefore be paid a great deal of deference. That said, I feel compelled to say that it strikes me as unwise to hesitate to shoot at the criminal, as this man did. A criminal, especially a younger one with fast reflexes, can quickly fire their gun, just as happened here. For that reason, it seems that the best course of action would have been to shoot the criminal as quickly as possible, minimizing the risk of injury to the armed citizen, the employees, and any bystanders. While the loss of any life, including the criminal’s, is sad, it is far better that the violent perpetrator suffer than his innocent victims.
Finally, while I don’t rejoice in even the death of a violent criminal, I would like to point out that society as whole has almost certainly received quite a benefit from this criminal’s death. Already in his young life, this criminal had committed a variety of violent crimes, with no indication that he had any plans of stopping. Career criminals such as this young man tend to go on to victimize a great many people, stopping only while incarcerated or after being shot. Thanks to this armed citizen, one more habitually violent criminal is permanently off the streets.