Concealed Carry Holder Gets Shot While Investigating Gang Fight: Did He Make The Right Call?

A Salt Lake City, Utah, concealed carry holder found himself in the middle of a firefight with a suspected gang member after leaving his apartment to investigate an altercation Monday night.

The concealed carry holder was in his apartment when he heard an argument in the courtyard. When he went to check it out, one of the suspected gang members opened fire.

“They then took offense to our resident and ended up firing rounds at him. He is a concealed carry holder and returned fire,” said Salt Lake City Police Lt. Dave Cracroft.

Police say the concealed carry holder wasn’t involved in the initial confrontation, but drew his weapon and returned fire, getting shot in the shoulder during the melee.

“He was not initially involved in it, he came out to see what was going on and we believe it is a gang problem,” said Cracroft.

It is not known if the suspect was injured, but fled the scene and is still at large.

The victim was transported to an area hospital to be treated for his wounds.

The shooting raises some questions as to the role of a concealed carry holder. For starters, a concealed carry permit provides the holder with the legal means to protect his or herself and their property, and also the lives of others if the situation requires it. However, unlike a sworn law enforcement officer, concealed carry holders are not required to initiate contact and enter into a potentially deadly scenario.

So the question is: Did this concealed carry holder make the right move by exiting his residence to check on the welfare of others, or should he have stayed inside and called the authorities?

(This article was a submission by freelance writer Brent Rogers)

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 21 comments… add one }
  • Skyviking May 17, 2016, 12:02 am

    Don’t know what the Resident heard to make him come out of his apt. Don’t know what verbal exchange there was (if any) before shots fired, since those details were not reported. The best advice/observation I can offer is that Resident should vacate-Pronto. The gang knows who he is and where he lives. Time to move on – pronto. A detour through Gunsite would be life-extending, too…

    • LLeeJohn January 7, 2017, 11:35 pm

      The short article says he went outside to investigate an altercation not gun fire. Sounds like he was chasing the opportunity to shoot someone. He was definitely in the wrong for not calling 911 and apparently lacks a few bricks.
      With the thug having been able to wound the guy in the shoulder, had an officer arrived without knowing the complete situation and who was who, he may have been able to put a hole in the CC permit holders left eye.
      We know what would follow, the cops become a bunch of ass holes for having shot and killed a guy shooting indiscriminately in a neighborhood who probably did not evaluate what was in the background or even look. Salt Lake City has had several children killed riding in cars, setting on front steps, playing in front yards and asleep in their beds.
      And this idiot thinks he’s qualified to shot up the neighborhood. I can only hope when the case is screened by the city, it’s determined to be a felony and kicked up to the District Attorneys for prosecution. I’m sure the DA, Sim Gill will recognize it to be a great opportunity to nullify/revoke his CCW permit.
      It is not always the anti-gun clans that hurt our cause, a guy like this may hurt us even more.

      • EgbertThrockmorton1 January 19, 2017, 10:25 pm

        “…several children killed…”, where exactly, and when? Living in the area, I can think of only one in the last year. A few have been hit by gang-thugster gunfire, but if My “facts” are correct, we only lost one child to the thug demographic. And yes, we need to curb the “Hero-Cowboy mentality that seems to infect several of the Utah CWP crowd. While anyone killed or wounded is far, too many, let’s keep our “facts” straight and separate from opinions. We don’t need anymore ammo for the political pimps like Mr. Gill, and Ms. Biskupski, do we?

  • Nantambu Okechuku December 18, 2015, 10:14 am

    I think he was in the wrong for involving his self in a gang fight, his responsibility was to observe and report like a security guard. If it’s not your problem call the proper authority.

  • Loupgarous July 21, 2015, 8:41 pm

    As a former sheriff’s deputy and commissioned police officer with a State agency, my answer is that the CCW holder went into a situation even a trained, sworn police officer should only have entered after calling for backup. He was wrong. CCW permits aren’t warrant cards.

    Pretty obviously, too, he didn’t pay attention during any course he was required to take to get his CCW course (he may have lived in a “shall issue state,” worse luck for him). Walking into a gang fight is not what you do if you’re just a citizen, CCW permit or not. You call the actual police, and you retreat as far from the altercation as you can without endangering others in your care. You make every effort to not get into a fire fight, even if you’re in a state with a “stand your ground” law.

    I’m glad he didn’t die, and I really hope someone took him aside after the nice pain shot wore off and told him exactly what he did wrong. He was about very close to not living to regret a very bad decision – if the guy who winged him had nicked his subclavian artery, that would have been the end of his adventures in concealed carry.

    • Pompous A$$hole? August 17, 2015, 4:40 pm

      I hope you aren’t in Arizona, you sound like you are “Superior” over us lowly citizens…
      Sorry you think you need to ride such a big horse, but maybe he thought someones life was in danger.
      CCW or not if I hear someone needing help I’m going to checkout out…That doesn’t mean I’m being an “Adventurous CCW” guy.
      It means I care about my fellow man enough to see if they need help.
      Serving during Viet Nam and going to Iraq twice, I do have a sense of situational awareness and commonsense.
      There are many “Citizens” out here that aren’t total dumb asses and maybe some day you might need back up to save your life so you might not want to come across so “Holier than Tho”

      • Dat Guy August 7, 2016, 10:58 am

        Talk about being a pompous horses ass….you have a lot of nerve. The guy is a LEO, as am I, and stating real world FACT. The CCW doesn’t mean anyone has the right to be an investigator or police officer. That work is best left to police officers and sheriff’s deputies. You get off of your high horse, sir. Just because you’re a combat vet doesn’t mean you have the necessary street experience to intervene in an altercation. Keep your nose out of police business and use your self righteous pointy finger to dial 911.

        • ejharb February 18, 2017, 9:29 pm

          There’s a Arizona dps officer who lived because some “civilian” decided to render assistance instead of being a “good witness”this happened recently.

          Sure you want us to be good witnesses when your waiting for some prep to park a 9 in your skull?

      • BowHunter60 September 19, 2017, 1:38 pm

        I am in Arizona and I tell all my students the exact same thing. Why leave cover for exposure? Stay put, gather facts from safety.

        As for the DPS officer who owes his life to an AZ citizen. The facts are not the same. In this case, the citizen saw the bad guy slamming the officer’s head into the asphalt and was definitely doing the right thing in exiting his car to render assistance to someone who was, according to the facts, in grave danger. The citizen ended the threat by providing 2 to the body and one to the head.

        As for this guy, the article does not provide enough detail to know what his rationale was for leaving his home to “investigate”. Pompous, you’re being a bit defensive unnecessarily.

      • Earl December 23, 2017, 5:00 pm

        Agreed…perfectly stated…I will come to the aid of a fellow human being…it is not a gun issue…I will grab a stick. Further, to the response following, from Dat Guy, my question: What is the job or business of the police? When was the last time they were on site to prevent a crime? No, they are on crime scene 15 minutes post. This vet’s previous service and his willingness to continue service is what makes America great. It is incumbent on us all to do what we can to help anyone in harms way. And besides, this citizen may not have known it was a gang related issue. And if he did, maybe the local gang members are on notice that they are not the only ones with guns. Finally, CCP holders think they have a right to chastise other CCP holders like it is a fraternity. It’s my 2nd Amendment right. So, you rely on the police…your odds of hanging a toe tag are the same, if not greater. To the vet, if you see me in trouble, please help…come hot!!

    • BowHunter60 September 19, 2017, 1:31 pm

      Could not agree more. I too am a retired sheriff’s deputy and combat vet. My instruction is that you never leave a position of safety for an unnecessary risk and expose yourself. This is an axiom even experienced officers understand. And, you’re absolutely correct, the CCW is NOT a license to engage unless it’s defensive only. When you leave safety for engagement, you created the scenario your defending against.

  • rabrooks July 20, 2015, 11:34 am

    There’s nothing illegal about returning fire. His life was now in immediate danger.

  • larry July 2, 2015, 1:56 pm

    If it was me and no family member was involved I would have stayed out of it. If you are looking for trouble it will find you. He’s lucky to be alive.

  • Rod July 2, 2015, 2:00 am

    Carry a 12 ga. Shotgun (With Buckshot or Buck & Ball load) Use your handgun as Back-up. This works for me, Stops Fights Fast!

    • Huapakechi August 17, 2015, 9:22 am

      There is the handgun factor. Thugs think that they have a better than even chance in such confrontations. Keep your handgun holstered and carry your shotgun. They disappear quickly when confronted by superior firepower.

      • Tom Horn August 18, 2015, 5:56 pm

        In my state (and I don’t care what Vice-president numb nuts says) if you go walking out of your house with a shotgun you will be charged with brandishing a firearm. Unless your friends, family, or loved-ones are under serious threat, or someone calling for help, let the LEO’s handle it. You could walk out and shoot an undercover officer (hard to tell good guys from bad guys), get yourself shot, or a hundred other bad scenarios. Sounds like he was a cowboy looking for a gunfight.

        • bryan November 11, 2015, 9:27 am

          Sounds like what most people would do. You hear a commotion outside your house you naturally investigate it to see if LEO need to be called. And like the person in the article everytime I step out of the house I am armed. So don’t be quick to judge someone a Cowboy.

  • Duckie July 1, 2015, 11:04 pm

    Could have been handled either way.. But if i walk out to see what going on and start getting shot at then he did what he had to do.. Next time call the police if your in an apartment complex.. Right there your putting yourself into a situation where harm could come at any direction.. If a female was screaming for help or something like this then by all means look into it while calling the police.. Shit we all have cell phones

  • Duckie July 1, 2015, 11:04 pm

    Could have been handled either way.. But if i walk out to see what going on and start getting shot at then he did what he had to do.. Next time call the police if your in an apartment complex.. Right there your putting yourself into a situation where harm could come at any direction.. If a female was screaming for help or something like this then by all means look into it while calling the police.. Shit we all have cell phones

  • Aaron July 1, 2015, 1:05 pm

    As a human, I’d say he was in the right.

    As an American, he opened himself up to questions of liability.

    We have obligations to our neighbors.

    But America doesn’t respect that. Calling the cops could get someone killed, but it’s our only option when we can’t ensure the liability of our decisions once the situation leaves our control. The protections for our decisions come from the clear interpretation that we acted out of defense.

    I live in a castle doctrine state with constitutional carry. But I know there are progressives out there who believe self defense isn’t a right. Unless I know who I’m defending, why risk the risk?

    • Aaron July 1, 2015, 1:09 pm

      Besides, he must have known he lives in a area infested with terrorists. Gangs inflict violence to achieve their organization’s goals. They’re terrorists.

      If he was ignorant of their presence, his inquiries weren’t escalations. But if he knew gangs were there, he should have known they’re the likely perpetrators and possibly recipients. No sense risking one’s own life to save a terrorist.

      Know your neighborhood! Check crime maps. Listen to police scanners. Meet your cops. Take citizen police academies.

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