The three Arizona gun-owners whose weapons have accidentally been fired in the past few days probably weren't the men ousted state Senate President Russell Pearce had in mind when he fantasized about a gun-toting hero taking down the gunman responsible for last week's movie-theater shooting in Colorado.
Justin Maccrae Smith, 24, inadvertently fired a bullet inside a Flagstaff McDonald's Saturday, injuring at least two people. A Chandler man shot himself in the ankle Monday after accidentally dropping his gun, and 33-year-old Jamie Lee Dubois shot himself in the hand Monday while fiddling with his friend's hand-gun.
If a crisis, who wouldn't want such capable gun-handlers to come to the rescue?
Over the weekend, Pearce wrote on his Facebook page that if someone in the theater had been armed and brave enough, the shooter could've been stopped. Pearce kind-of-sort-of apologized for those remarks on Facebook Monday, but wrote, "I will never understand policies that disarm honest honest citizens and leave them vulnerable to premeditated attacks of madmen."
Apparently some armed Arizonans are really just leaving themselves vulnerable to the unmediated attacks of their own stupidity.
When Smith got out of his car to enter the McDonald's in Flagstaff, he tucked his gun between his back and his pants. Smith then decided to lean back against a counter, Flagstaff police Sergeant James Jackson tells New Times.
"We don't know if his shirt was stuck in the trigger or if part of his pants was stuck in the trigger," Jackson says. "Whatever the case may be, something caused the weapon to go off. It shot a hole in the back part of his pants, the round hits the wall, then ricochets off the floor."
Fragments -- either from where the bullet hit or the bullet itself -- grazed the a woman's foot. And debris from where the bullet landed injured the leg of another. Police are unsure whether Smith will be charged, since he didn't intentionally handle the gun in a way that would cause harm to others, Jackson says.
It seems that the Chandler man who shot himself in the ankle really just dropped his gun, Chandler Police spokesperson Joe Favazzo tells New Times.
"Sometimes if a firearm falls and the backside of the firearm hits the ground, it can jam the slide forward -- or if it's a revolver, the hammer forward -- and actually fire the round," Favazzo says.
Luckily, the bullet only grazed the man's ankle; he wasn't charged with anything, and he wasn't that seriously injured. The third bad gun-handler, Dubois -- who shot himself in the hand in Mesa -- was tinkering with a friend's handgun.
Dubois figured it'd be safe to move the gun's slide back, while one hand covered the barrel of the weapon. He had to go to the hospital to get his injuries treated, but Mesa police also ruled the shooting an accident, as well.
Arizona has some of the most relaxed gun laws in the country so, by Pearce's logic, guns should be keeping people safe from harm. These three dummies show that guns just make it more difficult for some people not to harm themselves.
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