Society

Feds Can Shoot at Car Thieves, But Everyday Citizens Can't

| by Dabney Bailey
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An Oregon man has been arrested for firing a warning shot against a felon who was attempting to break into his home.

According to reports, Corey Thompson responded to a noise in his backyard and went to investigate with his AR-15. When he spotted the alleged criminal, he alerted the man that he was armed and then fired a warning shot into the ground after the man turned to flee. Police caught up with the criminal a short while later and arrested the man, but this wanted felon wasn’t the only person who earned a pair of handcuffs.

Police investigated the shooting and determined the gun was fired unlawfully. Thompson was charged with unlawful use of a weapon and menacing and endangering for firing one shot from his AR-15 into the ground. Police argue that Thompson firing the shot was excessive because “the suspect was walking away.”

This case is strikingly similar to another self-defense shooting in Queens, N.Y., last year. There, an FBI agent shot a person in the back for allegedly attempting to steal his car. The agent made the shot from his bedroom window.

The agent’s name was not released to the public, and the District Attorney did not pursue any charges against the agent.

It is worth noting that these events took place on opposite sides of the country, so the self-defense laws in New York might not necessarily be the same as the gun self-defense laws in Oregon. Nonetheless, these cases suggest a double standard in self-defense. The federal agent was not punished for shooting somebody in the back, but an everyday citizen was slapped in cuffs for firing a bullet into the dirt.

Why is it acceptable for a federal agent to shoot a person in the back, but a citizen cannot fire a warning shot in the ground to scare off a man who is walking away? What is your take on these stories? Is it a double standard or are these two completely different cases?

Sources: Medford, Examiner