That's a guy robbing an Exxon/Mobil convenience store in Dallas this week. Yes, he's wearing a dress and underwear on his head as a disguise, or perhaps a fashion statement. He also has one hand under the dress pointing it at both the clerk and a bystander inside the store. Don't know if he had a gun or not, but clearly that was the impression that he was trying to give. He robbed both the store, and the bystander.
As someone who carries a gun virtually all the time, I think its important to consider situations like this and what my response would be were I to be in the shoes of the bystander. I have a responsibility to myself and others to - as much as possible - determine what my actions would be under those circumstances.
Trust me.... If you haven't spent some time thinking "What would I do, if XYZ?" before something like this happens you certainly won't have time to think about it when/if it comes up. I might freeze up regardless.... I'd like to think that I wouldn't, and I've never yipped under pressure involving physical force or physical danger before, but you never know.
As for me, the decision to use lethal force is pretty clear cut. When he asked for my money I would turn slightly to the side (to reduce my profile), reach my hand in my pocket ostensibly to get my money, draw my loaded Makarov from its holster, and put as many hollow point rounds center mass as necessary to stop him from being a threat to me. I've practiced that drill many, many times both dry fire and live fire at the range. Hopefully that training would pay off and carry me through the adrenaline and fear affects from facing a "real life" situation.
So lets assume for moment that I am successful in stopping the threat. What then?
Maybe he has a gun, maybe not. Maybe he has a gun but has no intention of using it. Yes, if it turns out he is unarmed theres a chance I'd face criminal prosecution. That's more likely elsewhere, but it could happen even in Texas depending upon the Grand Jury and the particular District Attorney. I'd be virtually guaranteed a lawsuit from this idiot's surviving family which would cost me a bundle in attorney fees even if I win the lawsuit.
So, given all the bad things that might/will happen if I shoot - why do I choose to shoot? Because I won't take chances based on hoping that a man unbalanced enough to walk into a store wearing a dress and underwear on his head brandishing what I have to assume is a weapon, will make reasonable choices and not shoot me. I don't want all those bad things I described to happen to me, but I'd prefer that to bleeding out on a convenience store floor. For every surveillance video I've seen that ends OK like this one, I can show you one where the robber opens fire. Often for no reason.
I'd feel like shit if the guy turns out to be unarmed and that would stick with me forever - but in the end that's a choice that HE made. I'm put in that position by HIM. I think that would piss me off more than anything.
So, if you carry and found yourself in the shoes of the bystander - what would YOU do?