"Good guys" with guns cause panic, delay investigation into Walmart shooting

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/11/03/good-guys-with-guns-cause.html


The thing about mass shootings is that they occur in enough frequency and variation to support a wide swathe of existing political positions.

Another “good guy with a gun story”

“Mr. Engle saved countless lives here today,” said Don Aaron, a spokesman for the Metro Nashville Police Department. “He is, at the end of the day, the hero in this because we think this could’ve been much worse in terms of death.”


I know. Wouldn’t it have been better if none of them had guns and three more people would still be alive today?


Obviously the good guys need bigger guns.


The police had to be more careful and deliberate in reviewing the videotaped evidence of a shooting? Quelle Horreur!


I was wondering how more didn’t get shot when, in the confusion of imminent peril and with citizens with probably no training, who could keep track of which gun wielder was the bad guy. Friendly fire is definitely not friendly and who would think this could be remotely attributed to a trip to Walmart?


Yeah! and more guns too, after all they got two hands.


I thought “so what” at first as well, but from the video, I’m getting the impression that they didn’t catch the guy at the Walmart and didn’t know who to look for until they were done with the video. The guy seems to have gone home or something afterward. They caught him 7 miles away.

It wasn’t like a locked room murder mystery.


No training?

Colorado CCW requires, among other things, demonstrated competence via:


  1. Colorado resident
  2. Age 21 or older
  3. Not precluded by state or federal law from owning or possessing a firearm (e.g. felony conviction, mentally incompetent)
  4. Does not chronically or habitually abuse alcohol
  5. Is not an unlawful user of or addicted to controlled substances
  6. Is not the subject of a civil or criminal restraining order
  7. Complete background check, including fingerprint verification by FBI/CBI
  8. Demonstrates competence with a handgun by one of the following means:
    a. evidence of experience with a firearm through participation in organized shooting competitions or current military service
    b. certified firearms instructor
    c. honorable discharge from the Armed Forces within past three yearss
    d. proof of pistol qualification in Armed Forces within past ten years, if discharged
    e. retired law enforcement with pistol qualification within past ten years
    f. proof of completion of a handgun training class within the past ten years

Just because someone is technically competent at shooting guns at targets doesn’t mean they’re trained or qualified to deal with a high-stakes, potentially deadly situation involving dozens of innocent bystanders.


I have it on authority that Coloradan handgun training includes an oracle who tells every trainee exactly who the shooter will be ten years later when they eventually encounter the scenario in which they’ll need to use their gun to protect themselves and others. Strangely, they’re statistically more likely to be told its themselves who they will shoot, so they mostly just hand out mirrors for gunman identification purposes.


I am glad that Colorado has these measures in place then. Not so in my state where concealed and carry permits have been modified to allow anyone other than a felon to simply carry. No training required.

1 Like

In a general sense…



You assume the cops have real training? have you been living under a rock?


This article is a real thin stretch to politicize a tragedy. Hyping up the fact that police had to work a little harder to minimize somebodie’s right to defend their own life is rather petty.


Were any of the victims armed? Perhaps the presence of armed bystanders ended his killing spree early. For people in the Walmart, I’m sure the eventual police search took a back seat to the immediate priority of not getting shot.


I read the whole story but I’m a bit confused:

-Engle (good guy, unarmed), tackles Samson (shooter, very much still armed).

-During their arm-to-arm struggle, Samson somehow shoots himself.

-Engle then goes out to his car to retrieve his own gun and returns to the site of the shooting to keep watch until police arrive.

So, how is this an example of a ‘good guy with a gun’ story and not the much more routine story of ‘unarmed good guy with courage’?


8f turns that into a joke. You pay for the class and it is hard not to pass. One class and a range test also doesnt prepare you to return fire safely in a public mall.


Seriously, if there is a shooting and two “good guys” take out their guns and walk right into each other, whats going to happen?


Five hours buys a LOT of mileage on the lam.