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Thread: Recent Altercation in Colorado

  1. #1
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    (Note to Admin: feel free to move or delete as there is a discussion in the True Tales section -- http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum60/17276.html)

    Howdy... long time lurker, first time poster and lifelong supporter of 2A rights. Now that's out of the way, I wanted to post this (cross-post, I know) in the Colorado forum as this just happened up in Fort Collins:

    http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news...85/detail.html
    (text will be posted at the end)

    I'm glad to know our Colorado laws allow the use of a firearm to protect not only yourself but others from a serious threat of physical injury or death, this situation seems to put it to the test while a common-sense look at the situation carries with it some pretty important lessons. Something which really made me sit up and pay attention was the discharge was accidental and a result of what appears to be a hand-to-hand fight while one person came to the fight armed with a handgun.

    Had the 'shooter' in this case been overcome while directly engaging the BG and his entourage, it seems too likely one could be easily overcome and the gun could turn into a tool for the wrong folks in the fight. Also, jumping into the fight with a gun already drawn, while not necessarily unthinkable, seems a little excessive from an outside perspective. Granted, having it in the vehicle and probably not wearing a holster means it's got to go somewhere. Good sense in that case would probably tell me to keep distance and work to intervene without getting so close my gun could be taken away or accidentally discharged in a struggle (which is what led to the BG getting shot).

    I'm sure there's someone out here with knowledge of the event or the folks involved -- this isn't meant to criticize, but to look at the situation objectively and take any lessons away from it. At the end of the day, though, much respect to the shooter -- a paramedic -- who immediately began to render aid.

    The article:
    DENVER -- A paramedic who accidentally shot a man and then treated him, will not be charged prosecutors said Tuesday.Police said the paramedic, Cody Bettcher, was driving his sister to a party in Fort Collins in September.Outside the home, four drunk men started harassing Bettcher's sister. A friend in Bettcher's truck jumped out and confronted the group but one of the drunk men, David Patterson, began trying to provoke him into a fight, said District Attorney spokeswoman Linda Jensen.

    When Patterson shoved Bettcher's sister, she slapped him back and Bettcher grabbed his handgun, jumped out his truck, pointing his gun up in the air, said Fort Collins police spokeswoman Rita Davis.Bettcher said he then walked to the group, told them to step away, and was then punched in the face by Patterson, Davis said.Bettcher punched Patterson while holding the handgun, and "the gun accidentally discharged," Davis said. Patterson was hit in the shoulder.“He intended to hit him with the butt of the gun; the handle of the gun, when he did that the gun discharged,” Davis said.Bettcher ordered his sister to call 911, while he grabbed his paramedic rescue bag and locked up his gun, police said.

    He then took the phone from his sister, told police what had happened and rendered aid, Davis said.Patterson, 22, was transported to the Medical Center of the Rockies, where he had surgery on his shoulder and was discharged, police said.Bettcher was arrested after the shooting. He was cooperative with investigators while Patterson was vulgar and uncooperative, Jensen said.Colorado law allowed for a person to use physical force in for self-defense or to defend a third party. Prosecutors said Bettche was acting to defend his sister.


  2. #2
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    First off, welcome to the forums BC!!!

    Second, there are many ways this could have been done better (monday morning quarterback time). The Defender shouldn't have drew his sidearm unless he really intended to use it. Understandably, the drunk is, well, drunk and not in his right mind, but still extremely dangerous. After all, he did punch the Defender who was holding his sidearm.
    Lots of coulda shoulda woulda in this scenario. I'll give you my take: At the onset of trash talking, immediately tell the sister to get back in the truck. Tell idiot friend to stop fueling the fire, and get back in the truck. Drive away. If idiot friend starts a fight with drunks, well, that's his stupid fault, he should know better. He's already outnumbered 4-1 by drunks which is NEVER a good thing, armed or not. Oh, btw, a gun is NOT a club when it's loaded. One should only use a gun as a club when all ammo has been expended and the threat remains.
    Summary: Sister and friend are stupid for fueling the fire, and getting too close. Defender is stupid for not getting sister and friend away from drunks, pulling a gun, and using it as a club. This guy needs tactical/strategic defense lessons.

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    My only comment is that instead of the shoulderit should have hit him in the head and put the drunk out of his misery.

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    What kind of gun? I would like to know which safety failed allowing the discharge.
    Besides the obvious using as a hammer reason.
    Also how do you shoot the perp you are pistol whipping?
    Seems he was lucky he didn't shoot himself, or was he holding from the middle
    of pistol, so both ends were facing away from him.

    While unorthodoxed, good shoot

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    SlackwareRobert wrote:
    What kind of gun? I would like to know which safety failed allowing the discharge.
    I'd bet $10 he had his finger on the trigger while whacking the guy with it, and he clenched his fist prior to impact. We'll never know the true facts, without which I go with the simplest hypothesis. Far easier to imagine that a gunfired when the safeties are off and the trigger is pulled, rather than all safeties suddenly and miraculously failing and the trigger not pulled. (Pulling the trigger on a Glock disengages the safeties, for example.)

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    Thanks for the welcome...

    For the record, I think the safety device which failed sits between the ears and behind the eyes. The news (in a different article) reported it being a .45 -- whether it were a 1911, Glock, XD, or something else seems almost immaterial as using the butt of a pistol as a blunt force weapon with a finger anywhere near a trigger seems to indicate something went wrong with the brain controlling that finger long before the gun hit the attacker.

    I have to disagree with those who call "good shoot." It was an accidental discharge, from all reports. This seems to be a situation where presentation of a firearm should have bought enough time to extricate those at risk without getting into a fistfight with a gun in the free hand. Just my $.02 -- I wasn't there -- but I hesitate to applaud the shooting as righteous. In this case, it doesn't appear to be warranted as it was accidental. Legal, perhaps, but mistaken? I think so. Had he shot the guy while beating his sister, that's one thing. What happened next seems to be another altogether.

    What I do applaud is the shooter securing the firearm and rendering aid to the assailant, honoring his responsibilities as a paramedic as well as an armed citizen. This sounds like an object lesson in escalation and self-control. I won't postulate "what I would do" as we all know crisis situations are not the best fodder for armchair quarterbacking, but it seems to serve as a how-not-to jump straight into a fight with a gun in your hand. At least the man didn't become his own victim, I think we can all agree with that good fortune.

    Cheers!

  7. #7
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    From a tactical point of view, his primary mistake was voluntarily getting within arm's length of the opposing force. That punch to the face could just as easily have been a gun grab.

  8. #8
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    "...was driving his sister to a PARTY in Ft Collins...." I know that my "old fogeyness" will show BUT.......IMHO the shooters FIRST mistake was taking his sister to a party - period. I had a nephew shot to deathon August 23rd this year in Texas AT A PARTY!

    BOOZE and so-called "parties" are asking for trouble. If you want to AVOID TROUBLE - you gotta make some adjustments in your lifestyle, folks.

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