Opponents of gun rights often try to use cases in which an emotionally disturbed person murders their family then commits suicide as reasons to justify gun control. The fact is that such people wishing to murder their families are quite capable of doing so with many tools other than guns, and restricting access to guns would just leave the family members unable to defend themselves against either emotionally disturbed family members or random home invaders. A recent case from Florida, where an armed wife stopped her husband from allegedly trying to kill her and the rest of the family, showcases this point:
According to police, a Winter Haven man [who had a lengthy arrest record and] who threatened early Tuesday to shoot and kill members of his family instead was shot by his wife. The man, 34-year-old Troy A. Christoff, was treated for multiple gunshot wounds at Lakeland Regional Medical Center, according to a police report. He was charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder with a firearm and, after being released from the hospital under police custody, was booked without bond into the Polk County Jail in Bartow.
Witness statements and an examination of physical evidence indicate that Troy Christoff intended to shoot several members of his family who lived with him, according to the police report. Prior to the shooting, he had armed himself with a handgun and begun to load the weapon, stating which member of his family each bullet was intended for.
When the handgun was loaded, Troy Christoff raised the weapon and pointed it at his wife, according to the report. The wife, who had armed herself with another handgun to protect herself and other family members, fired multiple shots at her husband, striking him several times.
Here we have a man who was allegedly preparing to kill his family, and had even made clear which bullet would take the life of each person. Had his wife been unarmed, it is quite unlikely that she would have been able to stop him from killing her and the other family members. Indeed, even if no one had a gun, it is quite likely that this rather large man could have stabbed or beaten his family members to death, as few women are able to stop a stronger male attacker, even when they try their absolute best to defend themselves.
Had this occured in Chicago, where only those willing to break the law are armed, it is quite likely this case would have ended with a dead family. Instead, this incident occured in Florida, where the right to keep and bear arms is strongly protected, and as a result, this family is still alive.