Sunday, May 29, 2022

Wheelchairs and Bullets: Or How the Weak Survive Predators

True Stories of Victims Fighting Back

By Robert A. Waters

Open carry…

Maybe this first case doesn’t fit neatly into my title. Carolann Miracle wasn’t handicapped or weak, but she was only four feet, eleven inches tall and weighed just eighty-nine pounds. Such a tiny woman should be easy prey, at least that’s what Frank Taylor thought. But if he’d had any awareness about him, he might have noticed the butt of a handgun protruding from a holster on Carolann’s hip. Because Arizona, where this incident occurred, is an open carry state. The young woman was leaving a Circle K convenience store with her family when Taylor approached. He asked her for a cigarette, but Carolann said she didn’t have any. She later told reporters that he then “put [a] gun to my neck and said, ‘It’s loaded.’”

“I dropped my soda,” she recounted, “released my gun from my holster and cocked it. I shot him and ran in the opposite direction.” The hapless Taylor dropped like a stone to the pavement and bled to death. Carolann made it home, then called the cops. Since she’d legitimately feared for her life, she was not charged with any crime.

“Don’t shoot me again…”

Sixty-six-year-old Rosa Myles knelt in her bedroom saying her nightly prayers. The Flint, Michigan grandma mostly kept to herself, never bothering anyone. Disabled, she could barely get around even when she used her walker. Before going to bed, she heard a noise near the back of her house and decided to check it out.

As she scuffed her walker through the dark house, a man suddenly grabbed her. Dominique Carter had cut a window screen to enter the residence. Now he placed his knife against Rosa’s throat. Pushing and shoving his disabled victim, the bully realized she couldn’t put up a fight. Carter demanded money and jewelry, and Rosa informed him there was cash in the bedroom. Carter rushed down the hallway looking for a big payday. Rosa, rattling through the house behind her walker, followed.

Her son had recently given her a handgun for protection. It sat in a locked gun-case at the foot of her bed. Entering the room, Rosa grabbed the case and asked the intruder if she could use the restroom. Distracted as he searched for money, he nodded. Rosa, quaking with fear, had some trouble unlocking the case, but finally succeeded. She later said, “There were so many things going through my mind. I knew he was going to kill me.”

That wouldn’t happen. When Carter turned to face the disabled woman, she fired a .38-caliber bullet into his chest. Lying on the floor, the formerly tough assailant begged his victim not to shoot him again. She responded, “You just came into my home and tortured me. You don’t tell me what to do.” With that, she placed another round in his shoulder. Carter survived, and spent a few years in the penitentiary. Rosa was never charged with any crime—in fact, she was praised throughout her crime-ridden community for her bravery.

Wheelchairs and Bullets

At 2:15 a.m., Bryan Dyer lay on the floor of a stranger’s Johnstown, Ohio residence, struggling to breathe. He’d just been shot by a paraplegic he considered to be an easy target.

A year before, John Mutter’s life had changed for the worse. On his way to work, he’d barely survived an automobile crash that left him a paraplegic. A broken spine caused constant pain, and he was forced to use a wheelchair to get around. Even worse, he had learned that he would be evicted from his home the following week. Then, as if things couldn’t get more dire, he awoke to a stranger prodding him awake with a shotgun. While Mutter slept on the living room sofa, Dyer had rummaged through the house and collected $50, several bottles of prescription drugs, and the gun he now held.

But he wanted more. With Mutter now fully awake, Dyer said, “I have some of your property.” He then demanded to know where other guns were located. Mutter pointed to the corner of the living room. As Dyer turned, the handicapped resident pulled a .357 Magnum from the sofa and fired three times. Two rounds struck the robber in the chest. Within minutes, he had taken his final breath.

Mutter was not charged. Sure, he had few possessions and a whole lot of pain, but at least his gun had insured that he still had his life.

Third time is not a charm…

Criminals often think elderly persons are easy pickings. Earl Jones, a ninety-two-year-old World War II veteran from Boone County, Kentucky, had recently been burglarized twice. So, when he heard a loud bang coming from his basement at two in the morning, he suspected the predators were back.

Jones grabbed his .22-caliber rifle, loaded it, and waited. Within minutes, he heard three loud kicks to the door that leads from the basement to the living room. The third kick almost knocked the door off its hinges. As soon as Lloyd Adam Maxwell popped up in the doorway, Jones aimed and fired. Hit in the chest, the intruder went down. Dead. Two accomplices were later captured, convicted and sent to prison.

Earl Jones, surprised reporters when he told them how he really felt about the incident. “These people aren’t worth any more to me than a groundhog. They have our country in havoc…I was hoping another one would come up. I aimed right for [Maxwell’s] heart.” He later said, “That man was hunting me. I didn’t go to war for nothing. I have the right to carry a gun.”

Robert A. Waters is the author of Guns and Self-Defense with co-author Sim Waters. For 25 years, Waters has researched righteous defensive shootings. He has penned four books describing in detail many of those cases. In addition, he has chronicled numerous self-defense stories in his blog. 

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