American Handgunner Jan/Feb 2013 Digital Edition - Page 20

THE AYOOBFILES massad ayoob When the Young Must use DeaDlY Force Situation: A violent criminal presents deadly danger to innocent children — and only a young person is in position to protect them … with a loaded handgun. at any age … but not so traumatic as helplessly watching the murder of innocent loved ones. leSSon: Having to shoot a human being can be a terribly traumatic act In June of 2012, a defensive shooting in the Phoenix, Arizona area captured national attention. Reporter Sandra Haros of Phoenix News KTAR wrote: “PHOENIX: Authorities say a teenager shot and wounded a suspect in a home invasion in Laveen, west of Phoenix. “Phoenix police said the 14-year-old boy heard someone trying to break into his home late Friday afternoon, instead of answering the door the teen went upstairs with his siblings who are 12, 10 and 8 years of age. The boy armed himself with a handgun. “‘As he’s coming down the steps, a male suspect kicked in the door, entered the home with a handgun in his hand and pointed it toward the young man. At that point the young man fired his weapon at the suspect and the suspect went down,’ said Phoenix police officer James Holmes. “The suspect has been taken to a hospital and police said he’s in critical condition. “The name of the suspect and the teen haven’t been released yet.” Most of us in the world of defensive firearms saw that incident as having a positive resolution. Some folks, of course, were horrified a 14-year-old was able to access a handgun and protect his three younger siblings from a violent adult who broke into their home with a gun in his hand. Perhaps they would rather have let the criminal have his way with helpless children. It can be a sad, weak world. Fortunately, it appears at this time, the police and the prosecutor’s office are treating the boy’s actions as what they obviously were: an act of heroism. other cases Editor Roy Huntington and I got to talking about the topic, and young people in armed, defensive situations, and he remembered an incident I wrote up in this space in the March/April 2003 issue. It’s the policy of both the magazine and the criminal justice system not to publish the names of juveniles who are forced to use guns in self-defense. In that case, right at a decade ago, the shooter was 11 years old. His mother had fallen into the drug world and wound up in prison, and he had been adopted by his maternal grandparents. The man of the house, before he died, had taught the youngster to shoot. His widow and the boy lived alone, when a boyfriend of the incarcerated birth mother came to their house in South Bend, Ind. to steal the family’s gun collection. Entering on a pretext, the hulking 28-year-old career criminal pulled a carpet-cutter and held it to the woman’s throat, threatening to kill her and the young boy if she didn’t give him everything. The kid ran to the master bedroom and retrieved the Llama 1911 pistol that reposed there, cocked and locked and fully loaded with Winchester 230-grain Black Talon .45 ACP hollowpoints. He raced back downstairs and confronted the deadly intruder in the Isosceles stance his late grandfather had taught him. The intruder tried to swing his female hostage between himself and the boy as a human shield, but he was full of booze and drugs and misjudged the movement. He swung the woman past him instead of in front of him, leaving his side completely exposed to the boy. As the old man had taught him, the boy carefully aligned the sights, wiped off the .45’s safety, Continued on page 85 20 WWW.AMERICANHANDGUNNER.COM • JANUARY/FEBRUARY2013

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