Every now and then a news story shows up that makes me cringe. This is one of those times, one of those times that an irresponsible gun owner had his head firmly up his ass. This is one of those times that allow the anti-gun contingent to reload.
Let's start with this story from Fox:
Texas man charged after firing 'indiscriminately' at 2 men attacking his fiancée
Published April 03, 2017
A Texas man was arrested and charged with a third-degree felony for allegedly shooting at two men who were attacking his fiancée outside their home.
Jeremiah Morin, 34, of Spring, is being accused of firing at the men “indiscriminately,” the Houston Chronicle reported Friday. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said the two men were still at large.
Morin’s fiancée was taking her children inside the home when two men in ski masks attacked her, deputies said. Authorities added that Morin grabbed his gun and opened fire and that he continued to chase them down the street and fired more shots, according to KHOU-TV.
"He began to indiscriminately shoot multiple rounds down the street," Montgomery County Sheriff’s Capt. Bryan Carlisle said. “These rounds definitely went down a very crowded street."
Neighbors told the Chronicle that one of the two men had Morin’s fiancée in a headlock and were dragging her against her will. Carlisle said that’s when Morin came out and started to fire.
"You can make the assumption that maybe they were trying to take her or take one of the kids," Carlisle said. "We don't know for sure, we're looking at the totality of the circumstances."
Police said Morin and his fiancée have been uncooperative. Authorities believe the attack was gang-related.
Authorities did not find a blood trail as the attackers left the scene. The suspects were described as short, black males wearing dark clothing along with the ski masks.
So, if we go ahead and assume that the initial shots taken by Morin in an effort to prevent the assault and possible abduction of his fiancée were justified, then he would have likely been legally okay had the situation ended there (it is Texas after all).
My real issues begin after the bad guys are in retreat. Let's explore part two from a Nebraska perspective.
First, in order to justify the use of deadly force, one has to be able to articulate immediate fear of death or serious bodily harm. Kidnapping falls within the bounds of the deadly force justification.
Once the bad guys abandoned their initial objective and were trying to escape, they took with them Morin's ability to claim defense. When he pursued the bad guys into the street and continued to fire, he was clearly operating offensively.
The next issue, and certainly a more important one in relation to the safety of others, is Morin's neglect of one of the cardinal safety rules: Be aware of your target and beyond.
Morin's continual, inaccurate trigger pulls not only missed their mark, they put in danger any number of innocent, uninvolved people. Morin can only thank God that one of his rounds didn't injure or kill a kid, a mother, a brother, a father, etc.
I'm a pro-2nd Amendment guy, but come on! Guys like Morin put responsible gun owners on the defensive.
I would ask that everyone do each other two favors. One, become intimately familiar with use of force statutes and the narrow window of circumstances in which you can justify deadly force. Two, review and commit to your soul, the four cardinal rules of firearm safety.
Don't screw things up for everyone acting responsibly.
Take care, SIXTY
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