The AR-15 rifle seems to be in the news constantly these days. We have been hearing a lot about AR-15s since a mentally-ill young man used one to kill seventeen teachers and students in Florida on Valentine’s Day. He is only one in a long line of killers who have used the AR-15 to do their killing. However, we are getting only half the story. Yes, an AR-15 was used in the Florida killings, but another AR-15 was used just two days ago to save lives.
Dave Thomas of Oswego, Illinois, witnessed a knife attack in an apartment complex on Monday, February 25, 2018. The attack started when an argument took place between two people – and one of them had a knife. When Thomas saw the attack, he went inside his home to get his rifle and then ordered the suspect to stop. The suspect stopped and got away briefly before being caught by the police. The victim of the stabbing was taken to a hospital and is expected to recover from the attack. A life was saved without a shot being fired!
Thomas is a firearms instructor and has a valid firearm owner’s identification card and a concealed carry permit. He said that he could have used his handgun, but he grabbed his AR-15 because it is “a bigger gun. I think a little bit more than an intimidation factor definitely played a part in him actually stopping.” Thomas also said, “The AR-15 is my weapon of choice for home protection…. It’s light, it’s maneuverable. If you train and know how to use it properly, it’s not dangerous. And this is just a perfect example of good guy with an AR-15 stopped a bad guy with a knife. And there were no lives taken, so all in all it was a good day.”
Thomas is not the only good guy with an AR-15 to stop a murder. Three months ago on November 5, 2017, Stephen Willeford, a trained former NRA instructor, heard shots being fired at a nearby church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. He quickly took his AR-15 out of his gun safe and ran over to the church with bare feet. There he “placed a precisely-aimed bullet in a small gap in the perpetrator’s body armor” and caused the shooter to run to his vehicle. Willeford then jumped into the truck of another man, and the two men followed the shooter down the street to make sure he did not shoot anyone else. The shooter had already killed 26 people in the church, but he was stopped by a good man with an AR-15.
These are two cases within a three-month period of a murderer being stopped by a man with an AR-15 – with Willeford being trained by the NRA! It seems that an AR-15 is a “perfect weapon to stop a madman” when it is in the hands of a good man. So when you hear or read the cries of the gun control crowd calling for the AR-15 to be banned, just remember that it is the madman holding the rifle, not the rifle itself, that is the problem.