As cities across the country reel from explosive crime rates, many politicians at the local, state, and federal levels are too preoccupied with disarming peaceable American gun owners to identify, arrest, and prosecute actual criminals adequately.  

Two masked attackers met their match last month when they attacked Los Angeles resident Vince Ricci as he walked toward the front door of his house. The pair brandished a firearm at Ricci, who pulled out his own gun and shot at the thugs, who ran away.

Ricci successfully defended not only himself but his wife and baby daughter, who were inside.  

Like millions of other Americans, Ricci is a law-abiding gun owner who carries a firearm for protection.

Well, he used to be. 

After the attack, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department suspended Ricci’s concealed carry permit for reasons that are still unclear. His attackers were still at large, and he said he worries that his family will “become a statistic” because of this unfair treatment as a crime victim. 

Despite repeated attempts by gun control advocates to downplay the importance of armed self-defense, successful defensive gun uses such as Ricci’s actions are far from a rare occurrence. Almost every major study has found that Americans use their firearms in self-defense between 500,000 and 3 million times annually, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged. In 2021, the most comprehensive study ever conducted on the issue concluded that roughly 1.6 million defensive gun uses occur in the United States every year. 

For this reason, The Daily Signal publishes a monthly article highlighting some of the previous month’s many news stories on defensive gun use that you may have missed—or that might not have made it to the national spotlight in the first place. (Read other accounts here from past months and years. You also may follow @DailyDGU on X, formerly Twitter, for daily highlights of defensive gun uses.) 

The examples below represent only a small portion of the news stories on defensive gun use that we found in November. You may explore more using The Heritage Foundation’s interactive Defensive Gun Use Database. (The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.) 

  • Nov. 2, Mesquite, Texas: A jewelry store owner shot at thieves attempting to steal his merchandise, police said. Two young men, one armed, entered as the owner was preparing his golf bag for a tournament the next day. The owner exchanged gunfire with the armed man until both would-be robbers ran. It was the second time the store owner had shot at armed thieves in his store; earlier this year, $75,000 worth of merchandise was stolen from his car. 
  • Nov. 4, Walton County, Florida: After a criminal fled during a traffic stop initiated because he was driving a stolen car, police said, the ensuing manhunt ended in a citizen’s arrest. The car thief tried to break into a nearby home, and police officers arrived to find three residents holding the suspect at gunpoint. 
  • Nov. 5, Los Angeles: In the Ricci case described above, two robbers charged a concealed carry holder as he walked to his front door, police said. One attacker pointed a gun at the homeowner, who pulled out his own gun and fired until the two fled. His wife, 5-month-old baby, and a nanny were inside the residence. 
  • Nov. 8, Chicago: Police said a group of armed robbers attacked a man who had just crashed his car. The concealed carry holder and the robbers then exchanged more than 30 rounds. One of the man’s assailants sought medical attention and was taken into custody.  
  • Nov. 12, Allegre, Kentucky: A property dispute turned into a physical altercation in which a man shot three assailants in self-defense, police said. He was treated for injuries that weren’t life-threatening. The three assailants involved were charged with trespassing, assault, and terroristic threatening. 
  • Nov. 17, Issaquah, Washington: Police said a woman fatally shot her ex-boyfriend when he tried to break into her apartment. Authorities questioned and released her after determining that she acted in self-defense. “From now on, I will be walking the neighborhood with a gun,” one neighbor said.
  • Nov. 19, Philadelphia: A man fired his gun in self-defense as a group of teenagers attacked him in a transit station, police said. He scared the teens away, and there were no reported injuries. The week before, another man was robbed and pulled down a stairway in the same area. 
  • Nov. 20, Shady Cove, Oregon: A homeowner shot and killed an intruder during a home invasion, investigators said. One resident had a “valid protection order” against the slain intruder, the Jackson County Sherriff’s Office said.   
  • Nov. 25, Hampton, Virginia: A driver shot and wounded an armed carjacker, police said. Critically wounded, the thief fled in the stolen vehicle and was caught minutes later after driving to a local hospital. Less than two hours before, police said, the same man had carjacked another automobile at gunpoint. He was charged with both carjackings and with using a firearm in committing a felony.
  • Nov. 26, Richland County, South Carolina: Police said a woman shot and killed a man who had followed her home, aggressively approached, and tried to hit her. The woman had obtained a protective order against the man, who had a history of domestic violence. 
  • Nov. 29, Nashville, Tennessee: A man was shot in his home when his girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend broke in and attacked him, police said. The wounded man and his girlfriend both shot back at the intruder, who fled. Three warrants for the attacker’s arrest were active at the time, all involving his behavior toward the former girlfriend.

From Chicago and Philadelphia to Issaquah, Washington, and Shady Cove, Oregon, ordinary Americans routinely use their firearms to defend themselves, their homes, and their families. 

In many of these instances, the victims either had orders of protection against their attacker, or the attacker otherwise had a clear history of violent, criminal behavior. In one incident, another crime had been committed in the same area less than a week earlier.  

If law enforcement can’t keep people safe, especially from a demonstrated threat, it is up to ordinary Americans to exercise their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves and their loved ones. 

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