Random thoughts from flyover country

Monday, July 27

Story from the South Side of Chicago exposes the idiocy of Illinois' lack of legal concealed carry.

A couple of off-duty police officers, a man and a woman, find a used car advertised on Craigslist and call the advertiser to get the location. They show up and call him as he requested. When they are led behind a building to look at the alleged car, they are attacked with one criminal grabbing the woman and putting a gun to her head and another criminal beating the man with a baseball bat. The man identifies himself as a police officer and draws his own gun. When the gun-toting criminal points his gun at the man, he shoots all three of the criminals involved.

The real story here is that the Markham police officers were armed and the bad guys didn't know it! That is the essence of concealed carry licenses that are issued in all but two states of the Union, with Illinois being one of them. Good guys with guns the bad guys don't know about.

“[The offenders] ran into the wrong police officers,” DuBois (Markham police Deputy Chief) said. “What if they were ordinary citizens? Not trained to handle those situations? It…[could have been] tragic.”

I think ol' Tony has drawn the wrong lesson from this. People who have concealed carry licenses are no different from off-duty police officers who carry concealed except for two very important points: 1. we have no duty to try to arrest anyone; and, 2. we have gone to a lot of trouble and expense to get our concealed carry licenses, including Use of Deadly Force Training and meeting marksmanship standards. The differences between the male officer and us is that we wouldn't identify ourselves as police before shooting at the bad guys and, I hate to say it, most of us are firearms enthusiasts and shoot more in practice annually than most police officers.

Before someone starts ranting about how the police officers are trained, etc., I doubt that they are better trained in close combat than former members of the Armed Forces. I have shown law enforcement officers at the Federal and local levels things that they hadn't ever thought about, and I'm not the expert that some of my acquaintances are.

Make no mistake, I think the officer did very well under the circumstances. I just don't think that it was because he was a police officer. Unfortunately, under current Illinois law, if he had been a civilian, he and his female companion would have been in big trouble.


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