To hear anti-gunners talk, there is no legitimate reason for civilians to carry concealed weapons for the purpose of self-defense — such a need rarely arises for the average person, they say, and civilians should instead defer to and rely upon the armed protection offered by local police services if such a need does arise.
Of course, gun rights advocates counter this by accurately noting that the Second Amendment is a fundamental right that has nothing to do with wants or needs. Furthermore, they can point to ample examples of legally armed citizens using their concealed firearms to stop crimes in progress prior to the arrival of armed police.
The latest such example came out of Salt Lake City, Utah, on Oct. 4, according to KUTV.
A licensed concealed carrier — who was enjoying his typical morning brew at a Starbucks he regularly frequented — saved the day when a mentally ill homeless man entered and physically attacked an employee, prior to mistakenly charging the armed civilian.
The incident began around 6 am at a nearby 7-Eleven store when 37-year-old homeless man Benjamin Overall began to harass a clerk, who hit a panic button that swiftly summoned police to the scene.
Overall quickly fled that store and ran into the nearby Starbucks where he promptly attacked a barista without provocation, kicking and hitting her in the head and causing injuries that required a trip to the hospital.
But when Overall then turned his attention to the 60-year-old unnamed concealed carrier, the older man drew his weapon and fired one shot into the assailant’s chest, prompting the assaulter to rapidly exit the Starbucks and run into the waiting arms of police officers outside who took him into custody.
“(Overall) started towards this customer and the customer responded by shooting him,” explained Detective Ken Hansen of the Unified Police Department. “So I think he reacted to that threat. It really boils down to fear of bodily injury to your own life or some else’s.”
An employee at a business located next door to the Starbucks told KUTV that homeless transients in the area had become a big problem of late, and praised the armed customer for saving the Starbucks’ employees by ending the threat.
“I give kudos to the guy who shot the man in the chest. I hope he gets a hero medal,” said Paula Nafus.
Fox News reported that Detective Hansen said of the concealed carrier, “He witnessed the assault against the clerk. And his response, because apparently after the assault the guy came after him, and so he shot the man in the chest.”
The assaulted employee, 24-year-old Shelby Hamilton, said she feared that Overall was attempting to kill her: “He just came in the door and … hit me in the back of the head from behind. I was the first one he saw.”
She also expressed her gratitude for the actions of the concealed carrier, who she explained was a regular customer in her store, and said, “I never would have expected that from him. He just seemed like a very meek guy.”
“So I was surprised, but also very grateful. I was very grateful that he was there. And I was glad it was somebody we see regularly so that hopefully, in the future, I can thank him,” Hamilton added.
Overall survived the gunshot wound to his chest and is recovering in a hospital. He was charged on Tuesday with aggravated assault and criminal trespass.
As for the concealed carrier, he was cooperative with the police when interviewed after the incident. Detective Hansen said it was unlikely that he would be charged with any sort of crime as it appeared that the shooting was a justified act of self-defense.
To hear the anti-gun liberals talk, the concealed carrier regular customer had no real need to carry a firearm on him — much less employ it against a dangerous assailant — and should have simply waited until the police were able to take the mentally ill assaulter into custody … even if that could have meant serious bodily harm or death for both him and the unarmed employee involved.
Instead, this legally armed civilian saw a drastic need to use his sidearm to bring a brutal criminal attack to a halt, becoming a hero to both his local community and Second Amendment advocates everywhere in the process.
It also certainly doesn’t hurt that cases like this completely undermine the liberal arguments against legal concealed carry.
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