Tulsa District Attorney Abuse of Power:Charge filed in road-rage homicide

This is a discussion on Tulsa District Attorney Abuse of Power:Charge filed in road-rage homicide within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Originally Posted by Miggy Not related to this particular case but staying in the car when all other options are out is the worst possible ...

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Thread: Tulsa District Attorney Abuse of Power:Charge filed in road-rage homicide

  1. #31
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miggy View Post
    Not related to this particular case but staying in the car when all other options are out is the worst possible thing to do: You movements are restricted to a 180 degree field, maybe a tad more. Your field of view is restricted, the metal in modern vehicles is NOT thick enough to withstand bullets, Hollywood nonwhistanding (And I know painfully, the wife of a friend of mine was murdered 3 months ago during a carjacking attempt. The bullets that killed her went through the metal of the rear door of her van and through the seat). You are anchored to one place and cannot move away from the BG who knows EXACTLY where you are and can shoot at his leisure. If you have to shoot from inside the vehicle, your movements are restricted by the seatbelt, steering wheel, widow frames, etc and that is if you are alone. If you have a passenger, one side your 180 becomes a 110.
    Miggy,

    He had no passenger, there was no gun reported on either, and undoing of ones seatbelt is a snap being a no brainer toward fighting from within a vehicle. With the seatbelt undone you are in fact not anchored and can move around within much easier.
    As to degree of viewing one has nearly 270 degree view above the highest point unless they have a neck immobility of some sort. Removing the seatbelt though helps very much with this though to equalize things.

    Outside of Hollywood people do IRL fight from their vehicles and win.
    As well a running car is better odds than open air toward escape and evasion. A regular car is obviously not a Brinks truck but it's better than nothing at all, unless you happen to have access to a Brinks truck.

    Sorry to hear about your victimized friend though. :(

    - Janq
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  3. #32
    Distinguished Member Array P7fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peacefuljeffrey View Post

    I'm sick of people "seeing where the DA is coming from" in cases like this. All it amounts to is that the GOOD people have to limit themselves and their responses to threats to give all possible benefit of the doubt and protection to the BAD people.

    I'm sorry, if I'm abiding by the law and I'm not the one high on illegal drugs and driving that way, I should be the one whom the law protects. Not this dead loser.
    If you're free to get out of your car at home when there is no threat, you should be considered to be just as free to get out of your car when there is a threat -- or else you're saying that criminal attackers have the power to limit where we're free to travel and emerge from our vehicles.

    The fact remains that it is the very stand-your-ground law that provides justification for getting out of your vehicle even when you know that the threat is out there possibly waiting for you. That's the whole point of not having to retreat from any place you have a legal right to be!!

    It was when we had a public duty to retreat that you would have been deemed legally wrong to get out knowing that you'd have to face a threat using lethal force rather than retreating.

    Remember? That's exactly what the stand-your-ground laws changed.

    With an anti-gun, anti-self-defense idiot DA like this, there will ALWAYS be something else the defender should have done to avoid having to shoot the drug-crazed badguy. Because drug-crazed badguys, don'tchaknow, are a valuable commodity and we really have to discourage eliminating them from society 'cause we need 'em so bad...
    Well said.
    The only thing this man 'possibly' did wrong was to get out of his vehicle with the gun in his hand. And I'm not even sure about that because I don't know how close or how aggressive the attacker was.
    This DA has decided the attacker was the victim rather than defending the 'law abiding citizen that was attacked by enforcing the 'stand your ground law'.
    Once again, as we see all too often, sympathy for the BG rather than for the attacked.
    I say good riddance to the BG. There is now once less to worry about. The bad thing is that there are many more BG's out there that want to terrorize, rob, rape and kill honest law abiding citizens that are minding their own business.

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  4. #33
    Senior Member Array DrLewall's Avatar
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    Very good Janq ..do you take retainers for new clients? Man I wish I could think like that!!

  5. #34
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrLewall View Post
    As a person once stated to me, road rage is not worth the hassle..these people are only in your life for a minute or two..sure you are going to get mad, but stay calm and soon they will be gone..in Gumm situation, I agree he did not handle it well.
    It sounds like what you're offering would have been good advice... for the dead guy!

    I mean, be real! It was not Gumm who did the "raging". It was Turney. Do you have any way of knowing that Gumm was "enraged" when he pulled off the road? He was, after all, the lead car, not the follower. For all you know, he thought Turney would keep on going and leave him alone; but when he turned in, and Turney followed, he feared (rationally) the worst, and got his gun out.

    I don't know why you want to characterize GUMM as the one who engaged in "road rage".

    Perhaps staying out of a parking lot and continuing driving to "get away" from Turney and maybe trying to get the attention of someone to call the cops, if he didnt have a cell, etc...a whole lotta "If onlys" here.
    Gumm did something he could count on working. He took decisive defensive action. All this gobbledegook that you're suggesting he should have tried could have led to more danger. For example, a high speed car chase, cars being rammed and run off the road, shots being fired between moving vehicles (like let's say if Turney'd had a gun). All in the hope that what? Someone else will call the police for him? And then what? How will the police be able to divine who is the bad/good guy?


    Gumm I am afraid, will be made an example of...I guess what I am trying to convey here is guys, if in road rage mode, let it go, be calm, be alert..and stay in your vehicle, I think you'd be safer there.[/B]
    That advice is actually perfectly valid -- except for the "stay in your vehicle" part -- and I apologize if I came across as critical of it. (Why you are still saying "stay in your vehicle" after several of us have pointed out that it is bad tactical advice, is beyond me.)

    I just wanted to make sure you don't really mean to apply it to Gumm, who doesn't appear (from these reports) to have bee ragin'.

  6. #35
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SelfDefense View Post
    I am a proponent of professional juries.
    That might be wonderful, until one day you find out that some professional jurors were bought and paid for and rendered corrupt verdicts.

    Just how would you protect against that?

    I can't believe that you would want to vest that kind of power in a small number of people. That, to me, seems pretty insane. Talk about absolute power having the potential to corrupt absolutely!

  7. #36
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janq View Post
    That's the law in this country. We don't support pre-emptive attacking of a person because they looked scary, or questioned ones birth right, or spoke to us with their hands throwing up signs of displeasure.
    Otherwise we'd be Wild West again. You disrespect me, BOOM, I end you. Now days we have laws and civility and specific narrow allowances for civilian engagement of those who not just disrespect us (yelling, cursing, showing us fingers, and even parking behind us in lots) but cross that very fine line from being scary or even intimidating to okay this guy is assuredly without going to kill me. Imminent threat.
    Oh puhlease. I never said a word about pre-emptive strikes, so why are you creating strawmen?

    The fact is, stand-your-ground laws never have been argued to allow people to respond to "disses," Janq. That's a bogeyman of your creation in this discussion. No one here--not me or anyone else I've read posts by--is saying that we should be able to apply S.Y.G. laws to a case where we shot someone for giving us the finger!


    No I disagree.
    Stand your ground is not an allowance to legally engage threats that you know are out there.
    It is allowing one to in the sense of a vehicle defend themselves when in a position where they are either unable to flee or to flee is unreasonable in the limited case of personal property defense (e.g. carjacking).

    I think you are dead wrong, here. What you describe is, in essence, the state of our requirement to retreat before we had stand-your-ground laws! You were required to seek any retreat possible, unless you were unable to, and unless doing so would further jeopardize your safety, which is essentially what you just described. So you are flat-out wrong in your description of what S.Y.G. laws do.

    The whole point of S.Y.G. laws now is to remove that obligation to retreat even if/when retreat could be managed safely! Why don't you see that that is the entire point?

    And the reason I support the concept is diametrically opposed to what you said about the laws: you said the laws, and morality, require us goodguys to exhaust all options before we "stand our ground" and fight back against badguys -- giving them all benefit of the doubt. S.Y.G. says it's not our burden to have to go seeking any and all ways of protecting and salvaging the life of our criminal attackers before we resort to deadly force.


    (But) a person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force, if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

    A person, even a drunk meth head goblin in the night, approaching ones car/window with expletives is not committing a forcible felony. Even parking his car behind another assumedly blocking him in where he'd gone to park, that is not a forcible felony.
    A forcible felony is defined in the law and there is no statement relvent to what Turney had done. Even as Gumm was in fear as he had stated.
    Somehow you missed the OR there.
    S.Y.G. could be invoked to prevent a forcible felony from being committed, OR it could be invoked "if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another"! Clearly, Gumm was saying that he feared for his life. The law's standard is met by that alone: Turney did not have to also be in the commission of a forcible felony.

    You are not reading the law correctly, Janq.

    But once more at the end of the day we are a land of laws. Within those laws it is stated that every man is seen as being equal and of equal value. Even drug crazed bad guys that most nobody likes.
    Wait a minute. If everyone has equal value--that's one thing. But you are pretending that they all have equal value at all times, and without regard for their actions! That's absurd.

    Proof that you are incorrect is the fact that a cop or a civilian can shoot and kill one person legally but would go to jail for shooting the person right next to him. What's the difference? The person he shoots has a knife to the throat of the second person. So clearly, both of those people do NOT have "equal value" and we are not required, as defenders, to treat each one with equal reverence for his life. One guy's actions caused the forfeiture of his right to life, while the other's did not.

  8. #37
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrLewall View Post
    Very good Janq ..do you take retainers for new clients? Man I wish I could think like that!!


    Janq seems to be arguing that we should still be exhausting all possible avenues of retreat, in an effort to spare the life of the badguy, even despite the hard-won passage of stand-your-ground laws. In fact, I dare say that he is exhibiting a lack of understanding of exactly what changed with their passage. (see my previous post)

    S.Y.G. laws remove from us the burden of having to do all we can to protect (by sparing) the life of a person who has come to us with an express disregard or contempt for our lives! Why on earth should law or morality obligate us to do what we can to not have to kill someone who comes trying to kill us? Is it argued that we won't have a clear notion that that's what they're trying to do, and we might somehow be mistaken about the feller with the big knife and the murder in his eyes?

  9. #38
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    Lots of good points here...none can really be justified/proven until ALL the facts are on the table.

    I would not have stayed in the car if blocked, possibly not even stayed in the parking lot if I noticed the jerk turning in after me...but I wasn't there...

    The D.A. is doing his job, someone has to sort out the facts! Even if the D.A. is an 'anti'...one thing seems clear to me...the victim here should have kept his lips sealed.

    This is stated on the forum, time after time...say nothing without an attorney present. Be friendly, but be very cautious in your comments...it may not be the situation, but your very own words that could sink you...

    In the heat of the situation, I know sealing the lips can be a very difficult thing to do, but you may be faced with LEO's asking many questions...don't assume they are 'with' you. They are only trying to get the facts...have your attorney give them those facts.

    OMO

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  10. #39
    Senior Member Array Freedom Doc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SelfDefense View Post
    I am a proponent of professional juries.
    Who would pay them?
    Anti-gunners seem to believe that if we just pass enough laws, we can have utopia. Unfortunately, utopia is NOT one of our choices.

  11. #40
    Ron
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    Quote Originally Posted by peacefuljeffrey View Post


    Janq seems to be arguing that we should still be exhausting all possible avenues of retreat, in an effort to spare the life of the badguy, even despite the hard-won passage of stand-your-ground laws. In fact, I dare say that he is exhibiting a lack of understanding of exactly what changed with their passage. (see my previous post)
    In my view, we should be exhausting all possible avenues of retreat, not so much in an effort to spare the life of the badguy, but to spare us the grief and expense of what is happening here to the shooter. It is a question of looking out for our own interests and that of our family, which is our primary obligation. Now, please don't misunderstand what I am saying. Obviously, if retreat is not realistic, then it changes the equation.

    Ron
    Last edited by Scott; September 29th, 2007 at 06:08 PM. Reason: Fixed quote tag.
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  12. #41
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron View Post
    In my view, we should be exhausting all possible avenues of retreat, not so much in an effort to spare the life of the badguy, but to spare us the grief and expense of what is happening here to the shooter. It is a question of looking out for our own interests and that of our family, which is our primary obligation.
    Bingo!

    You are 100% correct Ron and that PJ is where I'm going and coming from.

    As to Stand Your Ground I quoted the law as relative to this citizen, in Oklahoma.
    It is there in plain English and the caveat toward allowed legal action is "forcible felony".
    Per the statements the police indicate in the article that Mr. Gumm stated to them (yet another mistake on his part...shut your mouth (!) and request an attorney be present), there was no forcible felony action committed by the otherwise inarguable drunk drugged up jerk off with a bad attitude Turney.

    As to the 'Or' clauses as you pointed out; "...Has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force, if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm...", the law states to prevent death or great bodily harm. There is no statement by Gumm that Turney had means to do him great bodily harm or death.
    Remember the CCW 101 acronym 'J.A.M.' - Justification, Ability, and Means.
    All three items must be in play and defensible _before_ a civilian _may_ apply deadly force justifiably and legally. Turney pulling up behind his car to shout at him does not qualify. Stay in the car. And civilians with CCW permits are not police. The laws and tactics and allowances toward the two are not 100% interchangeable and to think or analogize that they might be can IRL be a very expensive mistake.

    Gumm getting out of his car gun in hand to intercept Turney, pre-emptively (!), does though turn the real and actual tables of who is the aggressor. Gumm now is. Further Gumm's statement that he upon confronting Turney found that he was not ddeterred and he himself stood his own ground to which Gumm then moved himself around the rear of Turney's car further work against him. And then in finallity he shot Turney, who as the undoubted jerk of the group was by your own definition standing his own ground.

    The SYG law in your specific state might be different which would explain your difference in understanding though it is not applicable in this specific OK case.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

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  13. #42
    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peacefuljeffrey View Post


    S.Y.G. laws remove from us the burden of having to do all we can to protect (by sparing) the life of a person who has come to us with an express disregard or contempt for our lives! Why on earth should law or morality obligate us to do what we can to not have to kill someone who comes trying to kill us? Is it argued that we won't have a clear notion that that's what they're trying to do, and we might somehow be mistaken about the feller with the big knife and the murder in his eyes?
    So, are you saying that any time someone says, I am going to kick your a.., or spouts out I am going to kill you, or "your history" in this case, in the stand your ground states we should just pull our pistols and blast the guy or girl that has a loud mouth?

    In this stituation, we don't have all the facts. I believe the DA will be looking into them and the Grand Jury will be making that determination. Turney from what we know did not have any weapon on him, and Gumm exited the vehicle with a weapon in hand from what we know. Could this have escalated the arguement? We don't know, but in most instances on this forum, the advice is given you don't present your gun unless your willing to shoot it, since we don't want to escalte the situation. If we are following this logic, then when Gumm exited his vehicle, he was prepared to shoot Turney at that time. Why did he wait till he was backed around the vehicle two times? I don't know but, it it possible that he escalated the arguement, and after two times around the vehicle then Turney realized that maybe this guy was just bluffing with the gun and decided to shove him? We will never know what Turney was thinking. We will however get to find out what Gumm was thinking if it goes to trial.

    How many times has it been stated on this forum that the best thing to do is to drive to a police station or someplace where there are plenty of other peoople around when being followed etc? Do these common sense rules not apply to states with stand your ground laws?

    For those that think staying in the car would have been a bad idea in this situation with the information we have, well I simply disagree. Turney had no weapon or other device that was presented, to readily smash through the window, or shoot through the thin steel car, Gumm admittedly was not in a possition to take flight on his feet. Just for kicks go home tonight and get your wife, friend whomever to sit in your car with it running and try to get into the car and get at them. By the way, tell them before this, to take any and all necessary action to stop you, including backing over your, driving away, ramming into some other vehicle, whatever. It should become clear in short order a person alone is not a threat to someone in their vehicle.

    I am not taking sides on this particular scenario, but simply trying to point out that just because your in a stand your ground state, the rules of good judgement should not be ignored. There are many things to learn from this incident. I hope some learning takes place. We can throw non factual information into the mix if we want, but that doesn't do any good. Look at the facts of this case as presented and go with them, not hypothetical's of what might have happened. That is what the DA and the Grand Jury will be doing. I hope things work out for Gumm, but either way, this will be very costly to him.

    Just because your in a stand your ground state, doesn't mean you don't have other alternatives.
    Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
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  14. #43
    Member Array Tye_Defender's Avatar
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    I am not a lawyer, however someone like me could be on the jury. Here is how I understand the SYG law.

    The other options that Gumm had are not important. He has the right to stand his ground, he is not required to retreat, run, ram the other car, etc. He had a legal right to be where he was so he has a legal right to defend himself from death or great bodily harm.

    The only pertinent question is should a reasonable person faced with the situation that Gumm was in, believe that Turney had the intent and the means to inflict death or great bodily harm to Gumm.

    Is there anyone reading this thread that does not believe Turney had expressed intent ("You're history!") and had the means to inflict death or great bodily injury to Gumm?

    Since Gumm had a legal right to be where he was, then this is the only question that matters.

  15. #44
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tye_Defender View Post
    ...Is there anyone reading this thread that does not believe Turney had expressed intent ("You're history!") and had the means to inflict death or great bodily injury to Gumm?...
    I do not.

    Going only by what was reported the following statements were made by the police and Gumm;

    Turney yelled at Gumm, made an obscene gesture and followed him to the parking lot, the affidavit says.

    Gumm parked his 1992 Honda, and Turney parked his 1991 Ford Escort behind him, blocking Gumm's car, according to the affidavit.

    Turney then walked toward Gumm, who got out of his car holding his .38-caliber Smith and Wesson revolver, the affidavit says.

    Gumm described Turney as being in a rage and told police that Turney said, "You're history," according to the document.

    Gumm told investigators that he took that statement as a threat against his life, the affidavit says.

    Police had said after the shooting that Gumm said he warned Turney that he had a gun and that because of health problems, he couldn't run away or fight him.

    Gumm also told investigators that he "backed away from Turney approximately two times around his (Gumm's) car" before Turney pushed his shoulder, according to the affidavit.

    Turney was shot once in the chest during the confrontation. He was taken to St. John Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.
    The above details both persons actions and reactions (please keep this in mind as you read) as they occurred sequentially.

    Turney exited his own vehicle and walked toward Gumm who at that time was still in his vehicle. Gumm noted Turney exit his vehicle and begin to walk toward Gumm's driver side door. We know it was that door because of the next statement.
    Gumm then chooses to unholster his weapon and exit his vehicle (cover). BTW whether he exited the vehicle first and then unholstered or vice versa doesn't matter.

    Turney being in a fit of drunken drugged rage states amongst no doubt other adjectives, verbs, and nouns the statement of "You're history".
    This statement and Turney's actions are not only his own but they are also in immediate reaction to seeing Gumm not only exit his vehicle which itself is a non-verbal sign of hey let's get it on, even as he has a total right to exit his vehicle even as it's not sensible nor wise. But he does so and has in hand a firearm which no doubt Gumm sees. Even if Gumm does not see it, the firearm, it is still by Gumm's own account still there and worst deployed.

    So now they are intercepting each other at a short distance and Gumm advises Turney that he is armed (assuming Turney was not already cognisant of this by sight) and that he was ill thus unable to fight (e.g. go hand to hand) nor "run" (flee on foot). Turney keeps coming.
    Gumm backs up and away from Turney rotating around his own vehicle twice. Turney gets within arms reach of him and pushes Gumm's shoulder no doubt in defiance.

    BOOM!

    Gumm's gun in his hand pointed at the chest of Turney discharges a single round into Turney's chest at arms reach distance.

    Okay now if you're still with me lets go to the Oklahoma state government website and look up manslaughter in the 'Second Degree' (which byy state definition is not murder as is manslaughter in the first degree)...

    OUJI-CR 4-104

    MANSLAUGHTER IN THE SECOND DEGREE -

    CULPABLE NEGLIGENCE DEFINED

    The term "culpable negligence" refers to the omission to do something which a reasonably careful person would do, or the lack of the usual ordinary care and caution in the performance of an act usually and ordinarily exercised by a person under similar circumstances and conditions.

    Source - http://www.okcca.net/online/oujis/ou...UJI-CR%204-104
    The DA is going to argue that a "reasonably careful person" and fit person would not step foot out of their car to engage an obviously unhinged seeming and irrational acting person. Muchless two as Turney did have a passenger, who in the article remains unadressed but was by extension also a potential threat. Gumm was also as noted of poor health which again lends one to consider reasonableness. As well it doesn't help that he is a CLEET certified professional ('Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training' - http://www.cleet.state.ok.us) as also stated in the article. The problem here is reasonableness.
    Turney obviously had broken multiple laws prior to and within the resulting interaction with Gumm. If he were alive he'd have been tried for those crimes, but he is not alive.
    Gumm on the other hand he too committed a crime. He shot and killed (not murdered) a _citizen_. Even as that citizen was a drunk drugged jerk he was still a citizen, just like you or I.
    The result of Gumms actions toward a citizen even as they were in reaction to some lip service paid and started by Turney resulted in a citizen being killed.
    Stand your ground law in Oklahoma is not a free pass to shoot nor kill people. The limits, like in most other states, are narrow and specific under constraints.
    Unfortunately for Gumm his reaction to actions against him were 1) Not applicable to SYG law in OK and 2) were applicable to criminal law in OK.

    If I were on the jury I'd no doubt take some hairy eye balls and myself be chased around (a room) by folks questioning my birth right and right to breathe the same air as others. But following he law as it's stated I'd be compelled, by law, to vote as based on the law and that vote would be 'guilty'.
    I wouldn't take any pleasure from it and would totally understand and empathize with Gumm but the law is the law, in OK.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  16. #45
    Ron
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    Without thrusting myself into the debate about whether Gumm did or did not have a right to stand his ground and shoot Turney, this case has emphasized the validity, for me, of my two rules, which I consider inviolate, when I am carrying a gun:

    1) if involved in a shooting, the only thing I will say to the investigating officer is "I was in great fear for my life," and, as courteously as possible, that I will be happy to answer any other questions only after I have had an opportunity to speak with my attorney, whose telephone numbers, by the way, are on my speed dial.

    2) When I leave my house and I am carrying, I make certain that I have left my ego inside my front door, so that if an incident arises I can take whatever steps are reasonably necessary to prevent it from
    turning aggressive or violent, including apologizing, even if I was not at fault, running and/or retreating if I can possibly do so safely, notwitstanding that I may have a right to "stand my ground."

    To get involved, as a subject, in the criminal justice system, or a defendant in a civil suit for damages, is always a Lose, lose situation to be in, and I owe myself and my family
    the obligation to avoid that happening, if at all possible.

    I realize that this is a bit outside of the thread's issue, that I have said this before, and that not all will agree, but my mother always told me that important things are worth repeating, and at least for folks new to concealed carry and new to the Forum, I think that this is important stuff.

    Ron
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