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Posted: 5/6/2002 1:17:16 PM EDT
The Richmond Times Dispatch is running articles all week about Virginia residents who have used a firearm in self-defense. The series is called "Right to Bear Arms." The original thread is here: [url]http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?id=114353[/url]. Today's story was about a shopkeeper who was beaten and held at gunpoint and ended up shooting (and killing) one of his attackers. He's still shaken up by it. It's a good look into real-life situations, though. Again, please write the articles authors and let them know you appreciate their story (if you do). Story to follow....
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 1:21:58 PM EDT
[url]http://www.richmondtimesdispatch.com/news/bearingarms/MGBR2JSOV0D.html[/url] [b]Wrestling with inner conflict Store owner relives shooting of robber[/b] BY MICHAEL MARTZ TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER May 06, 2002 John Lee fumbled for a cigarette and apologized. "I have to smoke," he said. "I am very upset." Lee was standing next to the cash register at the S&K Mini Mart, his convenience store on the fringe of the Woodland Heights neighborhood in South Richmond. Three months earlier, he stood at the same spot and shot one of two men who had just beaten him and robbed him at gunpoint. The man, 26-year-old Kenny Carter, collapsed under a tree outside the store on Forest Hill Avenue and died. Lee was not charged, but the trauma of that day still weighs on his mind. "I don't want to remember." Lee is a 52-year-old native of South Korea who has operated convenience stores in the Richmond area for almost 20 years. He served in his native country's army as a military policeman, but he never had shot a person before. His father had given him the .380-caliber Colt in 1985, but he never had fired it, even in practice. "I'm a Christian, but I can't go to church any more," he told The Times-Dispatch days after the Jan. 7 robbery and shooting. "I've killed a person. I am very sorry." In the months since, he has been buoyed by his pastor, neighbors and other well-wishers. He has returned to worship at the Lord Jesus Korean Church in Chesterfield County. His pastor, the Rev. Hyun Bae, said Lee has wrestled with an inner conflict since the shooting. "He missed some Sundays. . . . He is trying to recover himself spiritually," Bae said. Lee also is grappling with fear. He spent almost $500 on a bulletproof vest, though he finds it difficult to wear. "Very hot," he explained. He bought a new gun, a .357-caliber, because Richmond police still have not returned his Colt. And he has a concealed-weapon permit. Why? "Scared," he said. The fear has a cultural dimension. Lee would not allow himself to be photographed for this story, nor would his pastor consent to a picture at the church. John W. Jeong, president of the Korean-American Grocers Association of Greater Richmond, refused to talk about the issue of defensive gun use and crime. His group and another organization just offered a $10,000 reward for information about the killer of Nancy Cho at her South Richmond grocery store last month.
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 1:23:32 PM EDT
Lee has been robbed at gunpoint before, in September, when a robber stuck a pistol in his face and demanded money. "I give money, bye bye, OK," he said. His wife has been robbed twice at another store they own in South Richmond's Blackwell neighborhood. Still, nothing prepared Lee for the afternoon of Jan. 7, when two men ran into the store and knocked him down behind the cash register. They hit him with the butt of a gun over his left eye, under his right eye, in the back of his head. They punched him more than a half-dozen times. Images of his life "screened" across his mind, he said. He has two sons. "I said, 'I give you everything. . . . Don't beat me no more. Don't hurt me.'" The two men grabbed lottery tickets. They made him get up and open the cash register. One of them pushed him off the wooden platform behind the register toward the store's back room. A supply closet opens onto the passageway. The robber made Lee open the closet, go in and sit down. He shut the door but did not lock it. Lee heard one of the men say, "Go, go, go," and heard their steps thump across the platform. He thought they had left. Before Lee crept out of the closet, he picked up the gun his father had given him. He was reaching for the telephone to call the police when he heard a sound. He looked around the cash register and saw the two men next to the door. One of them held a large handgun, a .45-caliber. "I shot one time," he said. "They ran away." Lee ran outside. He saw Carter sprawled next to a tree near the intersection of Forest Hill and Dundee avenues. He called 911 for police and an ambulance. Carter was pronounced dead at a local hospital. Police arrested Donald E. Allen a few days later and charged him with robbery. Peace of mind has been hard to find for Lee. His father died recently. "This year is terrible," he said. Time is healing him slowly. "I'm OK. Jesus helps me." Contact Michael Martz at (804) 649-6964 or mmartz@timesdispatch.com
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 1:27:05 PM EDT
Good write up. Funny, I don't see such stories published in our Nation's trashiest rag, "The Washington Post" [rolleyes]
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 1:35:28 PM EDT
That's good stuff Blackfox, saw your first post also. Thanks for posting it.
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 2:09:13 PM EDT
Why didnt they charge the other BG with murder? His actions led to the (really unfortunate) death of his partner. Richmond. Murder capitol of the south, right?
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 2:11:15 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 2:43:07 PM EDT
It's only been three monthes from the shooting. When a guy i used to live with shot some home intruder, it took the police almost 6 monthes to give the gun back. I'm sure the investigation wraps up quickly, but you know how bureaucracy works these days. =oT Thats why if you ever carry for CCW, i'd use a crappy gun (that is RELIABLE of course), since they'll take forever to give it back and i won't miss it during that time.
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 2:51:45 PM EDT
Thanks, guys. This is pretty cool stuff to have printed in a newspaper. I'm pretty happy about it, but I'm poised to duke it out in the editorial section in a few days :) CalGat - I agree with you about charging the other robber. I don't know why they didn't. By the way, Richmond [b][i]was[/i][/b] the murder capital - until they passed "shall issue" concealed carry laws. Now we are quite low (relatively speaking). Admittedly, most of the murders had to do with the drug trade, though. There were very few people driving down the street dropped in their tracks. It was mostly impoverished people fighting over the scraps to get another joint. Our murder rate has dropped considerably since CCW, though. ColonelKlink - bottom line, the gun is gone. Would you want the PD surrendering evidence if your family member had been killed? I believe they will keep the firearm for a minimum of 7 years. In all likelihood, he'll never see it again. Who cares. You are likely to spend an average of $250,000 in CASH defending yourself from a wrongful shooting charge (criminal or civily) if charged. Either way, you will never look at yourself in the mirror the same way. Your family and friends will always look at you differently (or you will just think they do). People will recognize you in public and act afraid. You will have nightmares. You will go through depression. You'll be afraid to go to work. Your life will never be the same. What do you think a Colt .380 is worth? Nothing, in the grand scheme of things. Don't get me wrong - I know what you're saying. I just don't think we can imagine what Mr. Lee is going through. The Colt .380 is the least of his worries. Maybe a better approach is to buy him another weapon? Sounds like he ended up with a much better one in the long run. I'm thinking about going by to meet Mr. Lee in a few weeks and introducing myself. I hope he's doing okay. Black Fox
Link Posted: 5/6/2002 2:54:29 PM EDT
Don't worry guys the cops are on this one they confiscated the good guys weapon, and hasn't returned it You got to love that they can't do anything to stop the robberies but they show up afterwards and steal the one thing that probably saved the guys life. Oh well he bought a 357 better off without the .380.
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