"I carry a firearm everywhere with me. I don't drink. I don't smoke. I think my worst habit is I spend too much money on shotguns."
A concealed carrier and former Marine was in downtown Olympia, Washington waiting for an elderly client that he provided home health care for when he witnessed a man break into a vehicle and steal a small purse.
When the car's owners returned, he pointed out the direction the thief had gone. At that point, the thief returned to the scene with a friend identified by police as Ramon David Thomas. The owners confronted the two men and a heated argument ensued and the owners called the police.
The thief and his friend were joined by several other thugs and identified themselves as members of the Crips street gang.
The man said members of the group were trying to engage him in conversation when he realized they were trying to surround him and get into his 'blind side'. He told reporters he was aware the gang members were looking to attack him.
"They bum rushed me from around the car and into the street," he said. After one member of the group struck him in the head with his fist, he said he drew his concealed .380 caliber handgun, took aim, and started shooting. His attacker was between three and four feet away when he fired.
The attacker was struck once in the hand and once in the abdomen. The rest of the gang fled the scene immediately.
After shooting his attacker and seeing that there were no additional threats, the man holstered his handgun and waited for police to arrive.
He was taken into custody and told reporters the detectives "brought me to tears" during the interrogation. Yet he says he understands why police were so tough with him.
When asked how often he carries his handgun he replied: "Always"
Olympia Police Sgt. Aaron Jelcick said that the man was sober, has a concealed carry license, and that witnesses corroborated all of the facts in the case.
Since the shooting, the man has been harassed repeatedly by members of the gang. During one encounter Thomas, the accomplice in the purse theft said, "I (expletive) know who you are, (expletive)," court papers state. "We are going to get you (expletive) and your family...you are (expletive) dead."
Thomas was charged and convicted of to a charge of felony harassment, threats to kill but the man still takes the gang's threats to kill him seriously. He, his significant other and their young child are now afraid to go into downtown Olympia for fear of being killed. He has also given up his job as a home health care provider because he cannot put his client at risk.
Despite the threats and the changes in his life, the man had this to say... "Better me than somebody else who would have died that night in the street"
Whenever I hear about the Crips, I can't help but think about this episode of South Park.
It sounds like he did everything right and this is a good reminder that the encounter doesn't end when you put your gun away.
What do you think about how this concealed carrier handled everything?