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Armed Citizen Stops Violent Attack on Cop

Excellent example of the problems with self-defense reporting.

Howard Nemerov


August 26, 2012 - 2:56 pm

Perry Stevens was minding his own business when he witnessed an attacker on top of Officer Brian Harrison.

East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s spokesman Greg Phares says Officer Brian Harrision was escorting a funeral procession Friday when he pulled Temple over and wrote him a ticket for breaking into the procession.

Temple took exception and attacked Officer Harrison. Stevens ordered Temple to “stop and get off the officer.” Temple, who was already wounded once by Harrison, continued his attack, so Stevens shot him four times in the abdomen.

According to East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s spokesman Colonel Greg Phares:

He again orders Mr. Temple to stop what he was doing and get off the officer. Those commands are ignored and he fires a fifth shot and that hits his head. The incident is over with, and as you know, Mr. Temple is dead.

Police have already called the shooting justified. Mr. Stevens has a concealed carry permit.

Temple reportedly had a criminal record.

Two concerns here. First:

Both Phares and Baton Rouge Police Chief Jeff LeDuff stopped short of crediting Stevens with saving the officer’s life.

True. It’s impossible to know if Stevens saved Harrison’s life. That would require some sort of concurrent, alternate reality where Stevens didn’t intervene, then comparing the two outcomes. Life isn’t a tidy double-blind clinical trial.

The FBI reports that in 2010, 19 police officers were slain while alone on patrol. Seven officers were killed with their own weapons. Of 56 officers killed, 16 had fired their own weapons, as Harrison did.

Second: Only local station WAFB reported this incident. FBI Supplemental Homicide Reports show that private citizens killed police attackers only three times annually since 2000. Yet an unusual and compelling story of self-defense by a concealed carry licensee gets mentioned only by local media. Media blackouts allow anti-rights propagandists to continue claiming that self-defense incidents are rare, so banning concealed carry wouldn’t be an imposition.

Also read: 

Should the NYPD Even Be Issued Firearms?

Former civilian disarmament supporter and medical researcher Howard Nemerov investigates the civil liberty of self-defense and examines the issue of gun control, resulting in his book Four Hundred Years of Gun Control: Why Isn’t It Working? He appears frequently on NRA News as their “unofficial” analyst and was published in the Texas Review of Law and Politics with David Kopel and Carlisle Moody.
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