Monday, December 03, 2007


Robert and I talked about this when we hooked up awhile ago and it's something that needs to be talked about regarding when you have the right to shoot someone. Here is a link for some background information but I will give the details as I know them as well.

The situation is this: A person's neighbor is being robbed. The person rightfully called 911 but the police did not show up at the point the robbers were going to leave so that person, instead of helping the police and giving accurate descriptions of the felons and an accurate description of the vehicle they were driving, decided to take the law in his own hands and kill the robbers. He did not fire a warning shot to get them to stop he shot to kill nevermind the robber posed no direct threat to him or his family.

I think some questions need to be asked and I would like any response if you choose.

A) Was this shooting justified
B) Should this person be charged with a crime and what crime should he be charged with
C) Does this change your position on guns and or gun control
D) Is this person a hero or a villain


Robert E Wilson said...

Your link doesn't work. Try this one Texas Man Kills Burglars as 911 Operator Listens

As for your questions:

A) Was this shooting justified?

No. Nobody appeared to be in danger until the man left his home against the advice of the 911 operator. Even though he may have ultimately shot in self-defense, he put himself in that position voluntarily.

B) Should this person be charged with a crime and what crime should he be charged with?

I'm not an expert but I would say he should be charged with some form of manslaughter. (Since a man died, manslaughter is appropriate unlike when you were talking about the Cheney shooting.) I'm sure his neighbors would thank him but the man acted as a vigilante, which cannot be allowed.

C) Does this change your position on guns and or gun control?

Not one iota. The 2'nd amendment is for citizen's protection and is just as important as freedom of speech. This does not mean I advocate people putting howitzers in their front yard. There has to be limits if that's what you mean by "control". However, I detect a hint that "control" to you means banning of all guns.

D) Is this person a hero or a villain?

He shouldn't be perceived as either. His neighbors probably see him as a hero but no one should dismiss the fact that he acted as a vigilante. He should have stayed at home and reported every detail to describe the burglars and the vehicle(s) they used. That would have been the smart thing.

Erik said...

Again if you take the 2nd amendment as it was written the founding fathers mean for us to have muskets and not anything else. Isn't this though premeditated murder? He said he was going to do something to these robbers and did. That to me is premeditated.

Robert E Wilson said...

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. The Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights

No mention of "muskets and not anything else" there. Even in those days, some patriots had cannons.

As for it being pre-meditated. Well, that would be very hard to prove. The man only said he had to "stop them". He never said he was out to kill anybody. Murder requires proof that the individual planned to kill someone and carried out the plan. Maybe this guy did that but it would be very difficult to prove. This is why he should be tried for manslaughter.

Erik said...

Robert he said "stop them" that's what makes it premeditated. I would agree with the manslaughter charges if he never said that. There were clearly other ways to stop them but he chose to kill.

Robert E Wilson said...

As a prosecutor, how would you prove that "stop them" means "kill them"?