A Defensive Gun Use that Got the Newspaper's Attention

Posted on Wed, Aug. 03, 2005

Star carrier under attack fires his gun to fend off assailants

By JOHN SHULTZ The Kansas City Star

A veteran contract carrier for The Kansas City Star parked close to a store at Fifth Street and Troost Avenue as always early Tuesday. It meant a quick trip back to his van.

But not quick enough to evade four attackers.

One assailant and perhaps others in his group rained punches on the 66-year-old carrier through his driver-side window. He used a gun to fend them off, firing three times.

They never asked for money.

“I thought these guys just weren’t going to let up,” said the carrier, who asked not to be identified because his attackers remained free. “He intended to knock me out … maybe leave me for dead. At that time, he’d get whatever he wanted.”

The assault began just before 3 a.m., police said. The carrier said he saw the men emerge from nearby Garrison Park and run toward him.

“I thought at first they were probably just going to ask (for) money,” said the carrier, who has been approached before for money by panhandlers and provided loose change.

But these men, probably in their teens or 20s, sprinted his way.

“He just said ‘Hey,’ then pow,” the carrier said.

While the carrier was being hit, the van, which he already had put in drive, rolled a short distance and smacked into the concrete and brick of the store.

The carrier pulled a .380-caliber handgun from a holster near his seat. The attackers fled, running east, as the carrier fired a shot out his window. He got out of the van, stumbling, the carrier said, and fired two more shots above his assailants’ heads. . . .

The victim, police said, appeared to be within his rights of defending himself. . . .

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