Vigilante Gun Owner Opens Fire On Shoplifter In Home Depot Parking Lot
Gun control is a hot topic in the United States at the moment. Following the UCC shooting, left-wing critics are calling for tougher gun laws, while right-wingers are trying to justify the addition of more guns as a means of protection.
On Tuesday afternoon, a woman from Auburn Hills, Michigan, tried to take the law into her own hands when she fired a handgun at a suspected shoplifter who was driving off from a Home Depot. She made the judgment call on her own and failed to stop the shoplifter.
Cases like these demonstrate why the “add more guns” theory is a disastrous one. Increasing the number of guns in untrained hands is a dangerous idea and something that many people don’t even trust the police to handle, let alone a random citizen who thinks they have a good shot.
Think Progress reports:
If this wannabe Dirty Harry were an actual cop, she almost certainly would have violated the Constitution. Under the Supreme Court’s decision in Tennessee v. Garner, law enforcement may not use deadly force “unless it is necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.”
Based on publicly available information, there’s no indication that the fleeing man, who allegedly stole power tools and welding equipment, presented a sufficient threat to the public to justify the use of deadly force.
The vigilante shooter may face criminal charges. Among other things, Michigan law provides that anyone who “because of carelessness, recklessness or negligence . . . shall cause or allow any firearm under his control to be discharged so as to destroy or injure the property of another” may be sentenced to up to 90 days in jail. Depending on the woman’s intent at the time of the crime, she could potentially face much more serious charges — including attempted murder.
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