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  • Shooter opens up in mall, return fire?

    About a year back we had somebody pull a semi-auto rifle out and start shooting people in a mall here. As far as I know there wasn't a single armed security guard, police officer or private citizen on the scene that returned fire. The guy shot 6 people and finally was taken into custody after 3 1/2 hours of negotiating.

    My question is would I be in full right to return fire on a guy like that if I were wandering the mall when he opened fire? I would like to think my actions would be appreciated if I made two well placed shots and he was dead by the time police arrived. On the other hand I worry about being sued by the family, or even possibly being arrested for dropping him. Another scary thought is my rounds miss their target and end up hitting the wrong person.

    One more question. Why do we negotiate with these wack jobs? If they are crazy enough to do this once they surely have it in them to do it again - and putting them in a mental facility or jail for life doesn't do the public any good. Why not get a trained officer set up for a single well placed shot and solve the problem?
    Last edited by jbauch357; 03-27-2007, 06:29 PM.

  • #2
    You would probably be heralded as a Hero by the community, and rightly so. However, you are right. You may be open for a lawsuit. Especially if you throw a stray round or two and they strike someone else. Another concern would be that someone misinterpret your actions and fire upon you, like an undercover officer or off duty officer. If you were in danger of being shot, i think the self defence approach might apply. Unless you are a LEO or are in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death, your best action should be no action (other than being a good witness) As stupid as that may sound, nowadays thats your best option. If you would have been born 75-100 years ago, you would receive the keys to the city.

    Also, I might have missed it...You DO have a concealed carry permit?? Right??

    The swat team would definately drop him.... if he didnt commit suicide first.
    John 3:16

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    • #3
      Originally posted by redbird07
      If you would have been born 75-100 years ago, you would receive the keys to the city.
      sounds like we need to be retroactive with the laws and justice system...

      Originally posted by redbird07
      Also, I might have missed it...You DO have a concealed carry permit?? Right??

      The swat team would definately drop him.... if he didnt commit suicide first.
      Yes, I do have a concealed permit and practice as often as my budget and hand allow (the recoil from a 2 1/4" barrel .357 magnum creates a blood blister on my finger after ~150 rds with bare hands - takes just under a week to heal). I wouldn't be going for any hail mary shots but am confident I could hit body mass at 50ft free standing with my carry pistol.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by jbauch357
        About a year back we had somebody pull a semi-auto rifle out and start shooting people in a mall here. As far as I know there wasn't a single armed security guard, police officer or private citizen on the scene that returned fire. The guy shot 6 people and finally was taken into custody after 3 1/2 hours of negotiating.

        My question is would I be in full right to return fire on a guy like that if I were wandering the mall when he opened fire? I would like to think my actions would be appreciated if I made two well placed shots and he was dead by the time police arrived. On the other hand I worry about being sued by the family, or even possibly being arrested for dropping him. Another scary thought is my rounds miss their target and end up hitting the wrong person.

        One more question. Why do we negotiate with these wack jobs? If they are crazy enough to do this once they surely have it in them to do it again - and putting them in a mental facility or jail for life doesn't do the public any good. Why not get a trained officer set up for a single well placed shot and solve the problem?
        for shouting and missing and killing an innocent u will probably end up in jail for killing the bad guy u will be the hero and for ur comments about killing all the crazy people. i think no body will take this job.

        Comment


        • #5
          If you aren't prepared for a civil suit following defensive use of your gun, then don't carry. In this society, the chance of being sued after a shooting is very high. If you are going to carry, it is something you need to accept will happen, and make plans in advance for how to deal with it.
          Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

          I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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          • #6
            If you didn't take out the threat....why in the world would you carry concealed? That's the point of carrying off-duty and concealed. To defend yourself and others if needed. Expect to be sued no matter what if you discharge your firearm, but remember that you going home safe and being able to look at yourself in the mirror is more important than getting sued.
            I disaprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. -Voltaire

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            • #7
              If me or any of my family were in the gunman's path, I will take a lawsuit anyday of the week and twice on Sunday. You can bet I'm going to drop him. None of us want to think of a stray bullet, but do you just let the gunman shoot you or your loved ones because you're worried about a lawsuit?? Not me.
              I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

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              • #8
                Let's see if I understand this. On the one hand, there is a crazy gunman murdering people. On the Other hand, I have a weapon and the ability to end this carnage, but you won't because you might get sued. Hmmm.....I suppose you're worthless to me or my family so you might as well stop carrying your security blanket (pistol) and stay out of harms way. The witness thing can only carry so much weight when you are witnessing murder. Save that for the robberies and thefts.
                Jerry
                "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Could I tack a question on?

                  Do y'all think that location matters? I mean, the metro area nearest my home tends to be very...um...(can't think of the right way to put this) "anti-justified shooting" It seems like every time we have an OIS, or deploy the spikes and the criminal wrecks, etc, that the internal investigations will clear the officer, but then 'community outrage' pops up, and the officer(s) lives/careers are effectively destroyed-once even the mayor publicly condemned the officers involved and there was significant restructuring (read: firing) in the PD.

                  Is it like that everywhere? or just in the area I lived? When I was in VA there weren't any of these incidents in my area so I don't really have anything to compare to.
                  "Duty, then, is the sublimest word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more; you should never wish to do less" R.E. Lee

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Can we say "active shooter?" A person who is actively shooting into/towards a crowd presents more of a threat to death/serious bodily harm. The risk of a stray bullet from your weapon striking a civilian is weighted much less than the risk presented by the shooter. And if I remember correctly, this "protects" the officer from a lawsuit. On the other hand, I don't know how that plays out when you're off duty or if you're a civilian with a CCW permit.
                    sigpic

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                    • #11
                      Plan A = get the eff out of there

                      Plan B = shoot, if plan A fails

                      The laws in Michigan, by the way, shield citizens from civil liability if they are reacting to the actions of a person engaged in criminal activity

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                      • #12
                        Once again great feedback from almost everybdoy - thanks for taking the time to reply!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by UH60fixer
                          Could I tack a question on?

                          Do y'all think that location matters? I mean, the metro area nearest my home tends to be very...um...(can't think of the right way to put this) "anti-justified shooting" It seems like every time we have an OIS, or deploy the spikes and the criminal wrecks, etc, that the internal investigations will clear the officer, but then 'community outrage' pops up, and the officer(s) lives/careers are effectively destroyed-once even the mayor publicly condemned the officers involved and there was significant restructuring (read: firing) in the PD.

                          Is it like that everywhere? or just in the area I lived? When I was in VA there weren't any of these incidents in my area so I don't really have anything to compare to.

                          Are you sure you're not talking about the Cleveland area? Recently we had 2 OISs one was 2 officers that fired on a kid that got out of his car and pointed a gun at the officers. He died of a self inflicted GSW. The community is apparently outraged that the perfect angel would be harrassed by the big mean police men. The other one involved a off duty officer shooting a kid who tried to drive his car into him (allegedly), few more fuzzy areas with that one, so I won't comment.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Sabre
                            Plan A = get the eff out of there

                            Plan B = shoot, if plan A fails

                            The laws in Michigan, by the way, shield citizens from civil liability if they are reacting to the actions of a person engaged in criminal activity
                            Sabre, just so I understand you. If some people are being murdered, your suggestion is to run away? Whether you are a police officer or not, the fact that you are armed would, maybe only to me, obligate you to try to save a life. Please tell me that you don't mean for off duty officers to flee.
                            Last edited by jerrymaccauley; 03-30-2007, 08:33 AM.
                            Jerry
                            "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

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                            • #15
                              I s'pose it depends. If you're there with the wife and kids, getting them out would probably be priority #1.

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