May 10, 2012
84-year-old Korean War veteran Fred Ricciutti and his wife were at home in Elizabeth Township, Pa., when at around 4:30 a.m. a man armed with a screwdriver and stun gun broke in through a kitchen window. Upon hearing the intrusion, Ricciutti retrieved a Luger pistol he carried during the war and went to investigate. When he found the home invader, Ricciutti ordered the criminal to halt, but when the intruder turned, Ricciutti fired, grazing the man in the back of the neck and causing him to flee. A short time later police captured the burglar a few blocks from Ricciutti’s house.
When asked by local media if the home invader had picked the wrong target, Ricciutti replied, “I think he probably might have.”
May 8, 2012
Pastor Anthony Jobe was at home in Fort Worth, Texas, when a man rang his doorbell and then attempted to break in through a side door. Upon discovering the criminal, Jobe retrieved a gun and fired at the intruder, striking him and causing him to flee. The criminal was captured a short time later when he sought medical attention for his wounds. The intruder’s injuries have been reported as non-life-threatening.
When interviewed by local media, Jobe stated, “That’s unfortunate, shooting pastor, I know… I shoot more as a hobby and I like to go to the gun range, but this is unfortunate that this happened like this, but you have to do what you have to do to protect your family.”
May 3, 2012
An armed robber entered a jewelry store in Chicago, Ill. and began pilfering the shop while holding the owner, 66-year-old stroke victim George Layous, his wife and two young grandchildren at gunpoint. The robber showed no mercy, pushing Mr. Layous to the ground and taking a purse and necklace from Mr. Layous’ 4-year-old granddaughter. After rounding up what he wanted, the criminal attempted to erase the store’s surveillance video, giving Mr. Layous an opportunity to act. In Arabic, Mr. Layous told his wife to retrieve the .380-caliber pistol he keeps in the store. Once armed, Mr. Layous shot the criminal in the leg, incapacitating him and ending the robbery.
Following the incident, Mr. Layous exhibited pity towards his aggressor, telling local media, “I am very, very sorry for him.” Mr. Layous’ son Joseph told an interviewer that he is trying to help his children understand what happened and is making sure to stress to them that “not all guns are bad.”
April 30, 2012
A crazed man entered a Smith’s grocery store in Salt Lake City, Utah, purchased a knife, exited the store and began stabbing nearby customers while yelling “you killed my people.” The criminal viciously attacked two patrons before a man with a Right-to-Carry permit arrived on the scene, drew his gun and ordered the attacker to drop the knife. The criminal complied, which allowed other bystanders to subdue the attacker until police could arrive.
Salt Lake City Police have hailed the armed citizen as a hero who likely saved lives, with Lt. Brian Purvis noting, “This was a volatile situation that could have gotten worse. We can only assume from what we saw it could have gotten worse. He was definitely in the right place at the right time.” An investigation revealed that the knife-wielding man has a lengthy criminal record with convictions for criminal trespass, attempted aggravated assault, attempted aggravated assault on a police officer and sexual battery and lewdness. The attacker’s latest stint in jail occurred less than a week before the rampage, after he was arrested for joyriding and possessing false identification.
April 24, 2012
Shortly after dropping off her grandson at her daughter’s house in Macon, Ga., 57-year-old Lulu Campbell’s car was approached by two men, who ordered her to hand over money. Campbell pretended she had no money, but one of the criminals warned, “You don’t open the door, I’ll shoot you.” Refusing to open the door, Campbell replied, “You’re gonna kill me anyway no matter what.” The robber then fired through the window at Campbell, at which point Campbell retrieved a gun and returned fire, striking one of the criminals and causing both to flee. Police later captured the wounded robber, who is expected to survive his injuries.
Campbell believes the pair followed her from one of the several convenience stores she owns and has made clear she is prepared to defend all of her stores, keeping at least one gun at each. In an interview with local media, Campbell told reporters “I always carry a gun, 24 hours, 7 days a week,” and went on to note that she owns more guns than she can count.
April 19, 2012
Shortly after 4 a.m., a Santa Barbara, Calif. homeowner heard a knock on his front door and a man outside it mumbling about money. The homeowner ordered the person to leave. Undeterred, the trespasser moved to another part of the home and attempted to break in through a set of glass doors. After retrieving an M-1 carbine, the homeowner fired a warning shot. When the criminal persisted, the homeowner fired again, striking the intruder in the leg.
An investigation revealed that the would-be home invader had attempted to break into another nearby house before he met resistance from the resident.
April 17, 2012
A homeowner, who had been the victim of a burglary the day before, was at his house in Renton, Wash. when there was a knock at the door. Shortly after the knock, the homeowner heard someone inside the home, retrieved a gun and waited upstairs. When the home invader approached the homeowner’s position, the homeowner fired three times, causing the intruder to flee.
When interviewed by local media, the homeowner had a message for would-be criminals, stating, “They need to watch out. They need to stop what they are doing. If they want to earn some money, find a job… They are playing with life or death for them.”
April 11, 2012
A man in Charlotte, N.C. was at home when he noticed a car pulling into his driveway and dropping someone off. The resident continued watching as the person who was dropped off went to the back of the house and attempted to kick in the door. After retrieving a firearm, the resident warned the attempted home invader that the house was occupied. When the criminal continued trying to break in, the homeowner fired a round through the door, striking and killing the would-be intruder. A short time after the incident, police captured the criminal’s getaway driver. She has been charged with attempted breaking and entering.
The community has expressed support for the armed citizen, with neighbor Etta Nash stating, “You’ve gotta suffer the consequences because people are tired of people taking what they don’t work hard to get,” while neighbor Maynard Dutton added, “Can’t blame the guy… What would anybody do?” The District Attorney’s Office has made clear that there will be no charges filed against the resident.
April 9, 2012
A homeowner in Toledo, Ohio was awakened by his wife at around 1 a.m. after she noticed someone turning the lights on and off in their bedroom. After retrieving a gun, the homeowner went to investigate, came upon a home invader and shot him. The criminal was struck twice and is recovering at a local hospital.
The homeowner’s child was also in the house at the time of the incident. The armed citizen credits the child’s safety to the family emergency plan he and his wife prepared for just such situations, and encourages other families to take the time to prepare their own.
April 6, 2012
A retired police officer was asleep in his Puyallup, Wash. home, when a group of four burglars, one armed with a crowbar, broke in. Upon becoming aware of the burglary, the homeowner retrieved a gun and fired on the criminals, causing them to flee.
A short time later, police were contacted when a man showed up at a nearby hospital with a gunshot wound. The wounded criminal did not survive, but police were able to track down his two accomplices that had dropped him off. A search of their vehicle uncovered stolen property, leading police to believe that the group is responsible for a string of burglaries.
Police have been supportive of the homeowner’s use of force, with Pierce County Sheriff’s Department Detective Ed Troyer stating, “At this point, if people enter your house and they’re armed with a crowbar – if you’re out doing burglaries and doing that – there’s a strong chance you’re going to get shot. People are able to defend their lives and their homes.”
April 4, 2012
Owner Keidi Hindi was in a back room of the Court Street Express convenience store in Syracuse, N.Y., when an armed robber entered and demanded money from the clerk, Hindi’s son, Younis. After hearing a shout, Hindi retrieved a pistol and went to the front to the front of the store. Upon seeing the criminal, Hindi told him, “Get out and put the gun down. If you shoot my son I shoot you.” The criminal complied, fleeing the scene.
Although Hindi has only owned the convenience store since March 1, this isn’t the first time he’s been forced to defend himself. Hindi previously owned a convenience store in Newark, N.J. where he and a clerk captured a would-be robber who is still serving time.
March 30, 2012
75-year-old Willie White was at home with his wife in Detroit, Mich., when at around 1:30 a.m., he heard a suspicious noise at a side door. Already on alert from the day before, when someone broke his window and fence, White retrieved an SKS rifle and went to investigate. When a burglar burst through the side door, White fired, killing the intruder. A police investigation revealed that the home invader was armed and that he likely had two accomplices.
White made clear to local media that he didn’t relish having to use force, stating, “I feared for my life. I don’t feel good at all. I wish there was some other way it could have been handled.” White’s son, Noel, showed support for his father, saying of his actions, “I think it will protect a lot of people. I think people will think twice before they start kicking in doors, breaking into houses, stealing cars, preying on old people. It doesn’t guarantee you’re going to make it out of the situation.” White also remarked on the support he’s received from the community, noting, “The neighbors all told me they were glad it happened.”
March 28, 2012
A frequent customer entered Baker’s Mini Mart in Tampa, Fla. and asked for change from owner Taquanda Baker. Baker made change for the man, who then left. About a half an hour later the man returned, armed with a gun, and attempted to rob the store. Baker responded by retrieving a gun and shooting the criminal, ending the robbery. When police arrived, the wounded robber was taken to a local hospital, where he later died.
When speaking to local media, Baker described herself as “heartbroken” over the incident, but explained, “I have to protect myself.” Baker has also taken steps to protect herself while away from her store, as police confirmed she is a Right-to-Carry permit holder.
March 23, 2012
78-year-old Jack Thompson and his wife were at asleep in their Brewers, Ky. home when two burglars, at least one of whom was armed, kicked their door in. Upon hearing the burglars, Thompson retrieved a handgun he keeps by the bed and confronted one of the home invaders at the bedroom door. Thompson fired at the criminal three times, striking him once. But the wounded intruder was relentless and continued after Thompson, until Thompson retrieved a shotgun and shot the burglar in the shoulder, ending the incident. The injured intruder was airlifted to a local hospital, where he underwent surgery; his accomplice fled before police arrived.
During an interview with local media, Thompson made clear that he intends to keep the pistol by his bed, but doesn’t think he’ll need it, stating, “I don't think he'll want what his friend got.”
March 20, 2012
An armed robber entered the Hometown Pantry convenience store in Springfield, Ill. and demanded cash from the two clerks behind the counter. While the criminal was reaching over the counter, one of the clerks retrieved a handgun and fired it, causing the criminal to flee. An investigation revealed that the clerk has a valid Firearm Owner’s Identification Card as required by Illinois law.
This isn’t the first time the employees of Hometown Pantry have been forced to defend themselves. In July of 2011 a similar incident occurred, where a clerk used a handgun to scare off a shotgun-toting robber.
March 19, 2012
A burglar broke into the M&M Food & Beverage convenience store in Durham, N.C. while it was closed at around 2:20 a.m. An employee inside the store noticed the intrusion, retrieved a gun and shot the criminal in the leg. The burglar fled the scene, but was captured a few blocks away.
The criminal faces charges of communicating threats, felony larceny and drug possession. Police have made clear that they do not plan to charge the store employee.
March 16, 2012
After threatening to kill himself and his estranged girlfriend, a criminal went to his girlfriend’s home in Scotland Neck, N.C. and attempted to break in through a window. Upon noticing her estranged boyfriend, the girlfriend, who was at home with her one-year-old daughter, grabbed a rifle and ordered the home invader to leave. When the intruder attempted to take the firearm from the girlfriend, she fired, striking him in the arm and ending the home invasion.
Once the attacker is released from the hospital he will face charges of assault, first-degree burglary and communicating threats.
March 14, 2012
Maintenance man Angelis Candido was working the graveyard shift at Met Foodmarket in Queens, N.Y. when an intruder attempted to break into the store by cutting a hole in the ceiling above the register. Upon discovering the burglar, Candido retrieved a shotgun and shot the criminal in the chest, killing him.
Police have confirmed that the shotgun Candido used was registered to the business, as required by New York City law. An employee of a 24-hour deli across the street from the food market is familiar with the dangers of operating in that part of Queens, telling local media that he has been robbed twice in the past year.
March 9, 2012
An armed robber entered the Up In Smoke shop in Albuquerque, N.M., drew a gun and demanded cash and items from the people inside. A struggle over the gun ensued between the robber and the store’s clerk, which resulted in the gun firing and the criminal falling to the ground. As the robber was on the ground, the clerk retrieved a shotgun from behind the counter and ordered the criminal to drop his gun. The robber refused, at which point the clerk shot at him, causing the criminal to flee.
An investigation of the scene revealed that the criminal lost the tip of his finger in the altercation. Police hope the recovered digit will be useful in tracking the suspect.
March 8, 2012
A clerk for the Food Shop convenience store in Conway, S.C. was walking to his vehicle after closing the store, when a criminal wearing a mask and latex gloves approached him with a gun and demanded money. Having been suspicious of a nearby car as he left the store, the clerk had a gun ready when the robber approached. The clerk shot the criminal several times, killing him and ending the robbery.
The person driving the suspicious car, who had been the robber’s getaway driver and lookout, fled the scene following the shooting, but was captured by police a short time later. Police have indicated that the clerk will not face charges.
March 6, 2012
66-year-old Dianne Stracener was home alone in Oklahoma City, Okla. when she heard suspicious noises around her house. Stracener retrieved a gun, went to investigate and came upon an intruder inside the home. A physical struggle ensued, in which Stracener shot and killed the home invader.
Police were supportive of Ms. Stracener’s actions, with Sgt. Jennifer Wardlow of the Oklahoma City police noting, “Obviously if she felt threatened, if she felt that she had the risk of some type of bodily harm or even death, she did have the right to defend herself there on the property.” Stracener’s neighbor James Arnette also showed his support, telling local media, “If it would have happened to me, I would’ve done the same thing… At that time, you want to do the best thing you can to stop something like that and that ‘Make My Day’ law, that’s what it’s all about.”
March 2, 2012
A man acting erratically entered the reception area of a medical practice in Colorado Springs, Colo., drew a gun and ordered everyone to the ground. In another part of the building, Doctor Jeff Ferguson heard the criminal and the resulting commotion; describing the scene to local media, he said, “it was chaos… When you heard [the criminal’s] voice, I was expecting any second to hear shots ring out.” That’s when Ferguson, a Right-to-Carry permit holder, retrieved a gun and positioned himself between the intruder and 20 to 30 employees and patients, enabling them to safely exit the building. Recalling his actions, Ferguson noted, “I was absolutely prepared to shoot him.”
Following Ferguson’s exit and the arrival of the police, the situation devolved in to a hostage standoff. Fortunately, police were able to eliminate the threat with no injury to the innocent.
February 29, 2012
71-year-old Carmen Polanco Perez was tending to the grocery store he owns in Hidalgo County, Texas when a pair of armed robbers entered the store and demanded cash. One of the robbers then shot Perez in the chest with a shotgun, prompting Perez to retrieve a .380-caliber handgun he keeps under the counter and return fire. The criminals fled once Perez started firing, but police believe that one of the robbers is a man who later showed up at a nearby hospital with a gunshot wound. Perez was treated at a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries and has been released.
February 27, 2012
90-year-old Jay Leone was at home in Greenbrae, Calif. when an armed man broke into his house and held a gun to his head. The criminal told Leone that there was a “contract out” on him and further explained that this was due to Leone being a collector of classic cars. As the criminal led Leone around the home at gunpoint, Leone told the gunman that he needed to use the restroom, which, after some convincing, the criminal allowed him to do. Once inside the bathroom, Leone retrieved a .38-caliber revolver he keeps hidden there and exchanged fire with the robber. During the gunfight Leone was struck once in the face while the burglar was hit three times in the abdomen. The altercation eventually devolved into a physical struggle, in which the criminal gained the upper hand, grabbed Leone’s revolver and tried to shoot him with it. The revolver was empty from the gunfight, prompting the wounded criminal to flee.
Leone’s attacker was later captured while attempting to receive treatment for his wounds. Leone has recovered from the wound to his face and was well enough to testify against his assailant a few weeks later.
February 24, 2012
61-year-old Dennis Fleming was at his home in Farmington, N.H. when he noticed that some of his drawers and belongings had been rifled through. After retrieving a .38-caliber handgun, Fleming went to investigate and spotted a suspicious man with a backpack walking up the street. A short time later, Fleming heard a loud noise coming from his neighbor’s home and saw the same suspicious man crawling out of his neighbor’s window. Fleming confronted the criminal and fired a warning shot into the ground to get him to halt. The tactic worked and Fleming was able to detain the burglar until police could arrive. The criminal has since been charged with burglary and possession of Vicodin and has admitted to burglarizing several other homes in town.
Unfortunately, instead of being hailed as a hero, the Strafford County Attorney’s Office recommended that Fleming be charged with felony reckless conduct for the warning shot, carrying a possible sentence of 3 ½ to 7 years. In the days following the incident Fleming received nationwide support and after further review of the case the County Attorney’s Office dropped the charges, with County Attorney Tom Velardi noting that “a charge under these circumstances would be unjust.”
February 17, 2012
Rick Melartin was at home in Bellaire, Texas when he heard a neighbor scream for help as she was being robbed at gunpoint. Melartin called 911, retrieved a .50-caliber handgun and rushed to the scene. Upon spotting Melartin, the criminal fled into the yard of another of Melartin’s neighbors, a 89-year-old woman. Fearing for the safety of his elderly neighbor, Melartin followed the criminal and ordered him to stop. It was only when Melartin fired a warning shot into the ground that the robber complied.
February 14, 2012
Bobby Lee and his two-year-old daughter Zoey were asleep in their Laurel County, Ky. home, when a trio of criminals broke into the house. One of the intruders made it into Lee’s bedroom, at which point Lee retrieved a gun, fired it, striking one of the burglars, and chased all three criminals from the home. The home invaders made it to their getaway SUV, but when it broke down Lee ordered all of them out of the vehicle and held them until police could arrive.
Lee bought his firearm after a previous burglary and practiced with it several times in order to be prepared for just such a scenario. When interviewed by local media, Lee noted, “I’m happy I protected my family. That is something you can take pride in.”
February 9, 2012
Laycee Lowe, a pregnant 17-year-old, was at home alone in Glendale, Ariz. when she noticed a prowler outside the home. After climbing a fence and peering into windows, the criminal attempted to get into the home through a do door. Lowe responded to the threat by retrieving a gun and firing it into the dog door, which caused the intruder to flee.
Following the incident, Julio Lowe, Laycee’s father, praised his daughter’s actions, stating, “She’s just real brave and slick. She handled it real well.” Julio also noted that there had been a suspicious incident at his home involving a prowler a few days earlier, prompting him to teach his daughter how to properly use a firearm.
February 7, 2012
The owner of Tacos El Mazatlan food truck in Oakland, Calif. was cleaning up the area around the truck when a pair of armed criminals approached and demanded money. At first the owner tried to flee, but one of the criminals fired at him, striking him in the back and leg. The owner then took cover, drew a gun and returned fire, wounding one criminal and causing both to retreat to a nearby getaway car. The pair, along with their getaway driver, was captured a short time later when the wounded robber sought medical attention.
The owner of the truck began arming himself after a previous robbery attempt and keeps body armor in the truck as an added precaution.
February 6, 2012
87-year-old Jack Goodwin was listening to a Lakers game on the radio in his home in Los Angeles, Calif. when he heard a suspicious noise. Goodwin retrieved a 9mm handgun he keeps by the bed, went to investigate and found a pair burglars attempting to break in. After the criminals smashed a window, Goodwin fired, striking one and causing both to flee. The wounded burglar did not get far; police found him in Goodwin’s backyard.
The intruders picked the wrong house, as Goodwin is a World War II veteran who served on Okinawa. When interviewed by local media, Goodwin’s daughter Vernita described him as a “true soldier,” but hoped he would move out of the city. Goodwin has other ideas, stating, “I’m going to stay as long as I want to… When I leave it won’t be because they ran me away.”
January 31, 2012
Just as Eddie Richardson was parking in front of his home in Mobile, Ala. at around 4 a.m., a pair of armed criminals approached him and ordered him to “give it up.” Richardson responded by retrieving a gun and firing at the criminals, who returned fire. One robber was struck during the exchange before both fled on foot. Richardson was not harmed during the incident.
When interviewed by local media, Richardson stated that he was just a working man, and “They was trying to rob me, and I didn’t go for that.” (WALA, Mobile, Ala. 01/31/12)
January 30, 2012
After picking up her 16-year-old son from school a woman returned to her home in Fort Worth, Texas to find that a burglar had broken in. The woman retrieved a gun, confronted the criminal, and shot him once in the leg. The burglar fled the home, but was captured by police a few blocks away.
When contacted by the local media for comment the woman simply noted that she was protecting her home. An investigation revealed that the intruder had at least one outstanding warrant. (The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas 01/27/12)
January 13, 2012
82-year-old Charles Robbins was asleep at home in Daytona Beach Florida, when a burglar wearing a mask and carrying a hammer and screw driver attempted to break in through the front...
December 15, 2011
A woman was at home in bed in her apartment in Merrimack, N.H., when she was awakened by the sound of an intruder kicking her door in. The resident retrieved a firearm and met the criminal...
December 8, 2011
A pair of armed robbers entered B&N Towing in Lexington, Ky at around 2 p.m. As one feigned interest in selling the owner an alternator, the other circled around the owner, then produced...
December 6, 2011
A pair of armed criminals entered Babe’s Market convenience store in New Haven, Conn. and demanded money from the owner and a customer. The 22-year-old store owner, Karar Jawad, explained...
November 29, 2011
After a midnight Black Friday shopping trip, the Neal family was followed by a pair of criminals to their home in Apopka, Fla. The robbers stormed the house, threatened the family and...
November 22, 2011
An armed robber entered the Wrightville Country Store in Wilmington, N.C. and demanded money from clerk Mark Headstrong. Headstrong retrieved a gun and ordered the criminal to drop...
November 18, 2011
A masked robber armed with a rifle entered Mt. Scott Pub in Portland, Ore., demanded money from the bartender and threatened customers. As the bartender retreated to a back room, the...
November 15, 2011
Shirley Bennett was returning to her SUV in the parking lot of a bank in Akron, Ohio, when a man attacked her, pushing her into the vehicle. As the attacker was on top of her, Bennett,...