Good guy shoots a bad guy because of fake gun

Remember that video that from the Houston Taco shop from a few months ago. Some guy with a FAKE gun robs a taco ship and then gets shot by a civilian with a gun. The good guy with a gun was in the right but A) he killed a guy and B) he has to deal with whatever the legal aftermath is.

Fast forward to last week. In a pizza parlor less than a mile from my house a guy brandished a pellet gun that looked exactly like a 1911. No one was hurt and the police arrested him. If I had been there I could have very likely shot him. This scares the crap out of me.

If I or my family were truly in danger and I shot and killed someone the aftermath is worth it. Say it again, I would have no problem shooting someone to defend my family.

In this case no one was actually in danger but the aftermath of a “good shoot” would be the same or maybe worse.

Every time I walk into a sporting goods store and see all the realistic pellet guns I wonder whose great idea that is.



The potential issue with that scenario isn’t the fake gun, it’s with the follow up shot(s) the defender took. As we have discussed before. Just, that particular scenario.

But I’m not a lawyer or anything


Yes I understand that about the Houston shooting.

My point is that ANY shooting is going to have a real cost for the good guy shooter. If I shot someone holding a fake gun I would have trashed my life for nothing.

Any shooting - just one shot - a totally good shoot- is going to require lawyers and court time and massive stress. Going though all of that if my family was never in danger is my nightmare.

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Yes it is worth it. If the gun is real or fake and is used in a criminally violent manner;if one reasonably fears for their life and uses a gun to stop them there should be no regrets. With out people to stop them innocent peoples lives are in danger. They will and do get shot and often die.


Your Subject line:
Good guy shoots a bad guy because of fake gun
is not valid.
No, he did not shoot because of a fake gun.
He shot because a malicious miscreant was engaging in a criminal act (robbery) while threatening multiple victims with a deadly weapon, a gun.

At the time, the criminal was wielding a gun, period.
Only in the aftermath was it found that the gun was non-functional, just as it would have been if it had been a functional firearm but not loaded.

You are right, any shooting, no matter how righteous and lawful, will totally change your life. And given today’s social and political environment, it may well ruin your life and your finances. Thus, the importance of seriously considering those possibilities, then deciding yes you are willing to engage in deadly force to protect yourself and anyone else you feel responsible for, and knowingly obtaining solid post-incident support (i.e. so-called “self defense insurance”).

Tough choices, hard decisions. But we should not arm ourselves as a magic talisman, hoping that simply having a gun handy will ward off bad guys; it will not.
If not prepared to use, and for the aftermath, we should not carry.



Yea that subject line was poorly written.

I Googled it and in California it is a $100 fine a first offence of brandishing a fake gun. WTF? Maybe this is short sighted from a 1A & 2A perspective but I am not sure why realistic fake guns are legal. It is unnecessary peril.

Ok this thing freaked me out because it was right down the street. Just putting it out there…


There are plenty of valid, moral, safe, valuable uses for realistic fake guns.

And it would be impossible to control them with laws, even more impossible than the real ones.

I’d disagree with someone wanting to take away my training pistols and replicas and dry fire tools because a few bad eggs use them to commit robbery


Two thoughts:

  1. Training is important. One of the things I like about USCCA is that they don’t just emphasize tactical training like some amateur militia looking to relieve weekend boredom. They also stress the importance of situational awareness and legal ramifications. It’s important not only to know the laws of your particular state, but it’s important to learn where the limits of the “reasonable person” standard are. Would a reasonable person be able to tell whether the person with a (fake) gun was a threat or not?

  2. Along those lines, how one articulates the event is very important. More kudos to USCCA for the following words which are kept in my wallet at all times: “I will cooperate 100%, but first I need my attorney.”


The true underlying problem is, he was not engaging in criminal activity, he is a victim and part of the liberal base! Crime is legal! That’s the problem!


“The rifle appeared to be a real weapon, since its orange tip has been previously broken off.”

I am not saying this was the exact same incident that my CCW instructor shared when he asked if we are prepared to face the consequences.
I recall sitting in his class and it had a chilling effect on me.

10 years ago, a cop’s life was ruined by this event. It’s possible his partner’s too.
Sonoma County’s longtime attorney disappeared, thought to have committed suicide :thinking:

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You are in the right place.

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When you take on responsibility of lawfully carrying a gun, you put your personal and financial ruin on one side of the scale, and lives of your family on the other. “This gun seems fake, but whats the worst than can happen if I am wrong?”


I never thought of that, appreciate the idea of questioning whether fake or toy guns which look realistic should be so readily available. Case in point.

Interesting story of your local pizza parlor. Close to home per se. The fact you were scared, speaks to your wanting to be responsible and keep risk away.

Possibly my bad habit, I tend to look at stories as learning lessons.

When I saw the video on that Texas taco place, “personally”, I thought his shot number two and those which followed were not necessary, and I disagreed with the actions he took from the moment of shot fired # 2, and the seconds and minutes afterward.

The first shot, I struggle with, as in the video, to me, it appeared the perpetrator was moving away and was turned “away” from the defender.

Are we all really tried by three entities?:

  • Court
  • Society
  • Ourselves

From an ethical, and legal perspective, especially if not in that U.S. state; I couldn’t live with that, and not wanting to be imprisoned. It’s humbling, as of course, I wasn’t there, it wasn’t my life that was threatened.

Anyone know the defender’s name? Interested to know how the courts will rule.


“Do you draw on a drawn gun?”

In that case, absolutely!

It’s never meant to be a fair fight.
Thugs don’t feel remorse.
I’m not a thug but self-preservation trumps guilt.


May have been a fake, however, if I reasonably Believe it’s real, which I very well could, the type of “Gun” doesn’t really matter. “Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, he had a gun and was pointing it at people. He demanded money and control. I was afraid he was going to kill someone. I stopped the threat…”


This no surprise. You had to know this was coming. Post incident, and post initial comment on another thread on this topic. I now more so agree with Attorney Tom Grieves that shot 1-4 was totally justifiable; shot 5-8 is competitive but shot number 9 is not a case he would not want to take, or words to that effect.


Oh yeah, when I saw the video, I really believed it was a real gun, never even would have guessed that it was not. In the vid, as you look at each customer, their face, and body language, they each appeared to believe it was real. When the perpetrator pointed his gun directly at them, that was threat to life – indeed.

I just struggle with if the perpetrator turned his back and was leaving, if it were me, should I have made that first shot.

I’m always so shocked when someones makes so bad a decision, how unwise the actions of a crime, how desperate and dangerous, leading to imprisonment, dismemberment, or death. “Crime does not pay.”

Interesting case. Seems like nowadays, more and more, video recordings capturing the events.


The perp didnt announce “I have a fake gun!” did he?
Bad guy got shot because he was doing armed robbery. Fake gun should not be an issue here at all. Whatever “civil rights activists” say is drivel, what about civil rights of room full of victims who didnt order their taco with the side of threat of death by bullet?
But, the activists and zealous DA may get upper hand in this because of subsequent shots.