We can only cover stories the stories we find
Despite the fact that they happen every day, Defensive Gun Use stories are often hard to find. They typically get only local coverage, sometimes as little as a small blurb in the local paper. If you see a Defensive Gun Use story and would like to help make this report as comprehensive as possible, send it to us through the Contact Us form below, through Gmail (firstname.lastname@example.org), or through or Facebook. Thanks to everyone who contacted us with a story this month - it really is appreciated.
We only include clear cut self defense cases
Yes, we leave some stories off because they are ambiguous or simply don't have enough information to call them defensive gun uses. Since most DGU stories receive minimal coverage we do our best to get to the facts in the case. Sorting through misleading media headlines is confusing at times. What do we mean by misleading headlines? How about the story this month labeled as "16-Year-Old Shot During Robbery". It definitely implied a different story than that the 16-year-old was the robber.
So what did January look like? Well, we learned that heroes still exist, you can't prevent crazy, and women do a damn fine job defending themselves when given the chance. Let's start with the heroes.
Heroes Still Exist
They aren't the superheroes of our childhood or of the movies, they are everyday people who are called to action to defend themselves and those around them. This month, we saw a number of these cases where good people stopped bad people. Ranging from a 12 year old boy to a 70 year old high school girl's basketball coach, the heroes really do represent everyone.
Their stories, while lacking superpowers are more impressive. These are typical Americans doing heroic things to protect others. Take a look for yourself:
January 13th - A 12-year-old girl in Kingman, Arizona finally had enough of seeing her mother get beaten. She grabbed a gun and pointed at the husband. This gave the girls mom time to get away and call police.
January 29th -A Harris County, Texas man got involved after seeing his neighbors yelling match turn physical and seeing the woman get assaulted.
January 31st - A 70-year-old girls basketball coach in Detroit was walking two of his players to their cars after a game when they were confronted by two armed robbers. The coach, a concealed carrier, drew his weapon and engaged the men.
January 31st - When's the last time anyone stopped a school shooting? That would be January 31st when a School Resource Officer stopped a shooter inside an Atlanta area middle school.
January 17th - A Canyon Lake, Texas man confronted his neighbor's ex-boyfriend who had been stalking her for months. Not knowing she was away, the stalker showed up and began destroying her truck when the neighbor confronted him.
January 30th - A 61-year-old Everett, Washington man saw a woman being chased down the street by a man wielding a knife. A concealed carrier, he drew his firearm and stopped the attacker.
January 23rd - Mark Sykes, a partially paralyzed disabled veteran who is confined to a wheelchair manages to stop an armed intruder.
January 19th - A Thomasville, North Carolina father heard his daughter being attacked by her boyfriend and intervened.
You Can't Prevent Crazy
And we go from heroes to villains in modern society - the deranged and mentally ill. Trying to put a rational explanation to psychotic or deranged behavior is grasping at straws. Once you accept that people sometimes do things that have no rational basis, you can start to examine other causes of crime and see why we need to address our mental health system.
Let's start with some examples - as always, just from this month:
January 2nd - A Miami, Florida man shot an intruder who was inside of his home, naked, and choking the family dog.
January 2nd - A Phoenix, Arizona father shoots and kills a deranged man trying to break into his children's bedroom.
January 9th - A Houston, Texas man shoots and kills a boarder after the boarder starts choking the tenant's dog. Yup - that's two people who were choking pets this month.
January 20th - A Sacramento, California homeowner encountered a delusional man and asked him to leave. The delusional man started to leave and then... removed all of his clothes, took a fighting stance, and attacked the homeowner. The homeowner shot and killed the delusional man.
So does that seem like deranged behavior? Those people are about to seem rational to you:
January 20th - In Fort Myers, Florida a 21-year-old man named Mathew Bruni entered a residence, naked of course, and proceeded to ummm... act irrationally. What did Bruni do? You'll want to read the whole story but the Cliff Notes are: ripped a tv off the wall, attacked the homeowners, defecated on the floor... twice, rubbed clothing on his face, and the list goes on.
Yup, if you're only going to read one story this month from the DGU, that one tops them all for pure, unadulterated batshit crazy.
Women Defending Themselves With Firearms
It's time to talk about women and self defense because somehow this became a topic of discussion this month. I was shocked to see women's groups bashing women for talking about their choice in arming themselves for self defense.
As the famous quote says, God created man, Sam Colt made them equal. Guns are the great equalizer. They take the three masked men kicking in a single mothers door and put them on equal footing once she is armed and trained.
There's often talk from these so-called women's advocates that guns do more harm than good. Please tell that to these women - I'm quite sure they are happy they were armed:
January 4th - The case that made national headlines as an Atlanta, Georgia mother and her children hid from an intruder in a crawlspace. When the intruder found them, she opened fire. The mother wounded the intruder five times, ending his attack on the family.
January 25th - A Magnolia, Texas woman home with her 6-year-old child encounters three masked home invaders who are armed. She uses her wits to trick the criminals to follow her to where her gun was kept. Mom wins!
January 4th - A Casper, Wyoming hotel clerk saw masked men walk into her hotel. One of the men gestured that he had a gun. The clerk reached into her lunchbox and drew her gun. The robbers left.
January 11th - A woman in Bloxom, Virginia was on her way to answer a knock on the door when she saw something out of the ordinary. The woman armed herself just in time to respond when an intruder broke down her door.
January 12th - Pam Loman of Shawnee, Okalahoma was home cleaning when she heard a knock on the door. Pam looked outside and saw multiple men in a car outside. Pam armed herself and was ready when the criminals
January 24th - A Detroit, Michigan area grandmother is accosted and robbed on a public bus. She fights back every way she can - biting, hitting, and drawing her concealed 9mm handgun.
We found a total of 99 Defensive Gun Uses this month, with 30 states showing at least 1 DGU for the month. Texas leads the way again with 15 and Florida comes in a close second with 11. The longer we do these reports the more I believe it's a difference in reporting. This month we had our first DGU case from New York. I know it happens more there but we are far less likely to see it in the press. Rounding out the top 5 this month were California, Georgia, and Indiana.
Favorite stories of the month that didn't get featured:
But nobody uses an AR-15 for self defense. Tell that to the Rochester, New York man who defended himself and his roommates as home invaders crashed through the door. What did he use? Yup, his AR-15.
Everyday Heroes: Bystander stops armed robber. Back on January 10th, a Houston, Texas man witnessed an armed robbery. While the crime was happening the man, a concealed carrier, drew his firearm and engaged the criminal. The victim of the crime has since thanked the heroes who intervened.
We can't stress enough is that these are only the stories we are able to find in the news. If you hear of stories local to you or anywhere, send them to us so that we can continue to expand the database.
You can search all of the reports on our site (use the search feature if you are only interested in a specific state). We are working on a searchable database for DGU events that will combine all of the reports and have some great tools. Since we are not a sponsored site at this time, this will take a little while to get in place so please bear with us.
For previous Defensive Gun Use Reports, click here.
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