As reported, a Long Island store owner was working the register on May 21, 2009, when a bat wielding robber entered, and started swinging. The robber yelled for the store owner to hand over money, at which point the store owner pulled out his shotgun. The robber immediately dropped to his knees and began begging for forgiveness, blaming the bad economy for his decision to rob the store. The store owner forgave the robber, and even handed him $40 plus a loaf of bread. The robber then fled while the store owner went to the back of the store to find find some milk to give to the robber. These events were captured on security tape.
This is yet another example of guns being used for self defense, without a shot being fired. Anti gun statistics don’t count such uses, despite the fact that the majority of the 2.5 million defensive gun uses each year don’t result in the gun being fired at all.
Getting back to this specific case, I have mixed feelings. First and foremost, I’m glad that this store owner was able to defend himself, as that is what really matters. However I’m a bit disappointed that he didn’t at least hold the robber at gunpoint and call the police. While that store owner may believe the robber won’t go commit another robbery, the statistics suggest the exact opposite. By allowing the robber to leave on foot, rather than in police custody, the store owner may have missed the opportunity to save many other people from suffering a violent robbery. However I also recognize that the self defense actions of crime victims should be paid a great deal of deference, whether it might appear that they used too little or too much force, due to the difficult situation they face that is of no fault of their own. As such, I’ll just be happy that this store owner was able to defend himself.
My thanks to Tony for pointing out this story.