[Top 3] Chilling Member Stories of Self-Defense

The following is a video transcript.

2018 has come and gone but has left us with many important reminders that every responsible gunowner must know. As Independent Program Attorneys for U.S. LawShield, we see a wide range of self-defense cases each year and wanted to share some of the lessons we have learned from three notable member stories of 2018.

Member Story #1: True Story–Wrongfully Accused Member Arrested by S.W.A.T.

First off, let’s look at Joyce’s case, a senior citizen who was arrested by a S.W.A.T. team.

This all started when Joyce was attacked in a road rage incident. When the aggressor charged Joyce’s vehicle, she removed her holstered firearm from her purse and placed it in her lap; just in case she was attacked.

With some quick thinking, Joyce saw an opening and escaped the encounter without incident—or so she thought. A week later, Joyce received what seemed like an innocent call from a police detective wanting to get her side of the story. Little did Joyce know, these simple and benign details would be all the corroboration the detective needed to secure a felony arrest warrant.

There is a valuable lesson we can all learn from Joyce’s case, and that is any time you have been involved in an incident involving self-defense it’s important to speak to an attorney—even if you think a crime has not been committed because you “stopped” the crime or escaped before it became a real emergency. An attorney will be able to advise you of your rights, your options, and counsel you on the best course of action.

In this case, if Joyce had spoken to an attorney before being contacted by the detective, there may have been a different outcome. Making any statement to the police, even something as simple as, “Yes, I carry a gun,” or, “I was in that area that time of day,” could be all they need to corroborate a lie or story.

If you think you are (or may be) investigated by the police, you need to speak to an attorney. Joyce’s case was no-billed, meaning insufficient evidence existed for an indictment on a criminal charge by a grand jury, but she was treated like a criminal, spent several days in jail, and was forced through the legal system.

Member Story #2: How I Saved Innocent Bystanders Using My Firearm

Let’s look at another U.S. LawShield member story from 2018. David came to the defense of police and innocent bystanders in a parking lot.

In this case, David witnessed a suspected fleeing felon smashing through cars and attempting to run over police. Concerned for their safety, he drew his firearm and discharged a single round, striking the attacker’s vehicle. The attacker was soon caught, but that wasn’t the end of it.

David, with his attorney present, fully cooperated with law enforcement, providing a written statement and a walk-through of the scene with investigators. Even though he was acting in justified defense of a third party, that did not stop police and prosecutors from presenting the case to a grand jury.

Thankfully, David’s case was no-billed by the grand jury; but we cannot forget the valuable take away from this case: even when you are acting in clear-cut, justified defense, you may still have to defend yourself from criminal charges, so you must be prepared.

Member Story #3: How Texas LawShield Protected Me From My Neighbor

Finally, this list would be incomplete without discussing Jerry’s case, a member who was forced to defend himself against his attacking neighbor.

Jerry, who had been carrying a weapon for nearly two decades without incident, faced a situation we all, as responsible gunowners, prepare for and try to avoid at all costs. Jerry displayed his firearm in self-defense in response to his neighbor’s violent attack on him and his vehicle.

He never got out of his vehicle, and he escaped the situation and called 911. Even though his neighbor started the fight, Jerry was arrested and spent the next year and a half fighting for his innocence.

At trial, Jerry was found not guilty after the jury was instructed by the Court on the Castle Doctrine.

The major lesson from this case that is a great reminder for all of us, is even when you don’t start the fight and act in self-defense, there may be a long fight ahead in the courts.

With the New Year in full swing, it is important for us as responsible gunowners to be informed of the potential consequences of defensive gun use (or even from just the mere accusation of displaying your firearm).

If you are ever involved in a self-defense incident or being investigated, here is what you need to know: it is critical for you to speak to a lawyer, it doesn’t take much to be dragged through the legal system (even when you do not start the fight), and even if you are not charged with a crime (in cases of clearly justified defense) you may have some legal hoops to jump through.

We can all learn from these experiences and better prepare ourselves for the future; but if you have any questions about these topics or what you might expect if you are ever forced to defend yourself or another, call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.

Innocent Child vs. Neighborhood Bully

The following is a video transcript. This is a reenactment and dramatization of an actual member’s story. This video does not and is not intended to depict or replicate the actual persons, places, or circumstances involved in the incident.

Kids always manage to find a way to get into trouble. However, in this member’s story, we will see what happens when it’s the trouble that finds the kid.

Our member’s son, Sam, was riding his bike to the park to meet with his friends. The neighborhood bully whose house is along the way was outside playing basketball with another kid.

“One of the boys had called over Sam’s friend, and Sam after a few minutes went over to find out if everything was okay and needed any help.”

The bully grabbed Sam and his bike and ended up knocking Sam over. The bully ran inside and Sam hurried off to the park with his friends. The bully and his parents decided to go to the park to accuse Sam of bullying their son.

“So, my son yelled ‘bull’ and the father had approached by this time and grabbed my son. He got him in a bear hug. The father refused to let go and held on, started screaming and cursing at my son, and then the whole family was yelling at him. The boys that were with my son had called their parents, who showed up with their brothers. They had a talk with this boy’s parents, and they were able to finally get him out of there.”

Sam frantically rode home and ran inside to tell his parents.

“As the story started to unfold and I realized that my son was attacked by a full-grown man, I called the police.”

The police took a statement from Sam and his parents. Sam’s parents told the police where the other family lived, and the police left to speak with them.

Surprisingly, the police came back the next day and gave Sam a citation for assault, harassment, and trespassing.

“So, I immediately escorted them out, took the ticket and escorted them out, and called my Independent Program Attorney the next day.”

U.S. & Texas LawShield Independent Program Attorney Doug Richards got involved and immediately began his own investigation; he was able to thoroughly review the investigating officer’s bodycam footage of the interviews. He concluded that the officer clearly misinterpreted the timeline of events and that a witness from the park who was interviewed had a clear bias towards Sam.

In court, the bully’s father lost his temper during Doug’s cross-examination, showing real signs of emotional instability. The combination of these elements helped Doug successfully challenge the version of events presented by the prosecutor.

This story serves as a reminder that there are people out there who will without hesitation throw an innocent child under the bus of the criminal justice system. Fortunately, Sam’s parents had added Minor Children Coverage to their U.S. & Texas LawShield membership and the judge found Sam not guilty on all three charges.

Learn how you can add Minor Children Coverage, located in our optional Member Coverage, to your U.S. & Texas LawShield membership today.

Top Member Stories of 2018

It’s our 10th anniversary at U.S. LawShield!

We’re celebrating with the 350,000+ members who’ve trusted us through the years to keep them educated, empowered, and safely home with their loved ones after a self-defense incident.

And as you can imagine, some of the members we defend experience some pretty scary, and often unbelievable circumstances after they’re forced to protect themselves…

Here are the top 3 member stories from 2018 for you.

Member Story #1: True Story – Wrongfully Accused Member Arrested by S.W.A.T.

Meet Joyce, the loving grandmother who faced down an entire SWAT team coming to arrest her.

Member Story #2: Member Story: Bad Guys Sends Good Guy to Jail With a Lie

Witness how a criminal telling one simple lie to law enforcement led to an arrest that never should’ve happened…

Member Story #3: No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

A warning shot to break up a deadly fight ends with the Good Samaritan getting handcuffed…

Now, as crazy as these stories are, the truth of the matter is we see thousands of cases just like these every single year. None of these members woke up expecting to have to rely on their U.S. LawShield membership to help them through these traumatic circumstances… But each and every one of them were very glad they had us in their corner.

Do you want the same protection?

Activate your annual U.S. LawShield Membership today, and we will throw in 2 extra months of protection – that’s 14 months for the price of 12 – completely FREE!

Click here to activate now and get two additional free months of U.S. LawShield membership.

Member Story: No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

No good deed, or in this case, “good warning shot” goes unpunished.

Imagine spending two years of your life fighting a charge for defusing a violent fistfight in your front yard. That’s exactly what happened to one LawShield member in 2016.

One evening in the Fall of 2016, a LawShield member went out for dinner with her husband and his brother. Like any family, differences of opinion can arise, and the member’s husband and his brother began an argument on the way home. When they arrived at their residence, the member went inside the home and began to get ready for bed.

The next thing she heard was a loud argument in her front yard. She looked out of her window and saw her husband and his brother locked in a bloody fistfight. She then ran outside and pleaded with the men to stop fighting. They wouldn’t listen.

The member ran back into her bedroom, retrieved her handgun, and walked out of the front door. She again shouted, “Stop fighting.” But they continued brawling. The member, fearing the fight would escalate further, pointed her firearm down to the ground and away from the direction of the men and her neighbors’ homes. She fired directly into the soft ground.

The men immediately stopped fighting. Understandably, a concerned neighbor called the police when he heard the gunshot. The police arrived, rushed their investigation, and instead of arresting either man, arrested the member for deadly conduct; recklessly engaging in conduct that placed another in imminent danger of serious bodily injury.

There was absolutely no direct, circumstantial, or forensic evidence showing that the member’s shot into the ground placed any person in imminent danger of suffering serious bodily injury. The evidence showed only that the bullet went into the ground, away from any buildings or people.

However, based on the responding officers’ assumptions and misunderstanding of the law, the member was arrested. The member’s nightmare was just beginning. Countless court settings and two years later, prosecutors finally dismissed her case because they couldn’t find any evidence to corroborate the alleged crime.

As you can see, the police and even prosecutors can sometimes misunderstand the facts and the law. Luckily, the member had an Independent Program Attorney armed with the knowledge to defend her and obtain dismissal of her criminal charge.

While this member was reasonable in her actions that night, and ultimately her case was dismissed, you should never fire a warning shot, unless you’re up for a long and hard fight for your freedom.

Member Story: Armed Neighbor Crosses the Line

This is a re-enactment and dramatization of an actual member story. This video does not and is not intended to depict or replicate the actual persons, places, or circumstances involved in the incident.

The Situation

In this story, our member lives in a rural area. He and his neighbor have had multiple disagreements over the years.

One day, our member receives a call from his wife while he is at work. She was in a panic, and frantically told her husband about an encounter she’d just had with their neighbor. She told him that their neighbor had entered their property and harassed her. She also told her husband that the neighbor was armed. Although being armed outside isn’t necessarily uncommon in their area, this was no friendly chat. The neighbor threatened her both verbally and with a gun.

Fearing for the safety of his wife and family, our member grabbed his firearm, immediately left work, and rushed home, where he confronted the neighbor about the situation. Tempers flared, and the police were called. Our member assumed nothing more would come of it. He assumed wrong. An investigation began, and it targeted our member as the criminal—not the victim.

The Outcome

Thankfully, our member called the U.S. LawShield emergency hotline, and an Independent Program Attorney intervened. After multiple interactions between law enforcement and the Independent Program Attorney, the investigation was eventually dropped, and no charges were filed against the member.

This story is a great reminder that any confrontation can unexpectedly escalate into a full-fledged police investigation, even if you’ve done nothing legally wrong. All it takes is one person to accuse another of wrongdoing, and a victim is suddenly targeted as an alleged assailant.

Our member did the right thing by contacting the emergency hotline at the first sign of a problem, which ultimately ensured his rights were protected.

Member Story: Bad Guy Sends Good Guy to Jail With a Lie

Not all people are good people, but we tend to assume most people act with positive intent. There are people who will lie in order to inflict legal and reputational harm against you. We fought this member’s misdemeanor unlawful carry charge for over three years before it was finally dismissed. This is a prime example of how slowly the wheels of justice move, and of how much damage can be done by a simple unfounded accusation.

The Incident

Our member was driving home from work on a 2-lane back road when a man on a motorcycle initiated the confrontation. Our member engaged at first—made a few hand gestures and yelled back at him—but otherwise just went about his drive home as normal. 

As our member continued his drive home, the motorcyclist continued to follow him.  

Police Involvement

No one called 911. Why not? Because nothing had happened that was worthy of a 911 call. While the motorcyclist was following our member, they passed a police car stopped on the side of the road. The motorcyclist pulled over, flagged the officer down, and made up a story that our member had pointed a gun at him. 

The motorcyclist gave the officer a description of the member’s truck and a partial license plate number. When the police found our member, they asked him if he had been involved in a road rage altercation. At first, the member didn’t even know what the police were talking about. It was such a minor incident that he had moved on with his day and forgotten about it. Then, the member realized it must have been the motorcyclist and confirmed that they had interacted. He then gave police access to his vehicle where they located the member’s carry pistol. These two things were all the police needed to corroborate the motorcyclist’s tale and arrest our member. 

The Takeaway

This is a great example of how little evidence the state needs to place you under arrest. It only takes one person’s word to get you arrested in the state of Texas. The word of a lying bad guy is enough to put you through the wringer of the criminal justice system. Interestingly, this motorcyclist had a previous conviction for making a false police report. What did he lie to the police about in the past? He falsely accused a different man of pulling a gun on him! So, even a known, convicted liar can get you arrested. 

Thankfully, the prosecutors eventually saw through the story and all charges against the member were dropped after three years in the legal system.

How Texas LawShield Protected Me from my Neighbor

One Texas LawShield member found out what one of his neighbors would do after a neighborhood dispute turned into a violent road rage incident. Jerry N. was driving out of his neighborhood when a neighbor suddenly pulled in front of him and got out of his truck threatening to kill him. Watch our video to find out what happened next and how Texas LawShield was able to help Jerry through the legal aftermath.  

Self-defense incidents occur every day. Most of the time, you’ll have to defend yourself against people you know. Will you be prepared like Jerry? Become a member of U.S. and Texas LawShield, the legal defense for self-defense today.

True Story—Wrongfully Accused Member Arrested By S.W.A.T.

After avoiding a reckless driver, our member Joyce thought the worst was over. She soon found out the worst was just beginning. From phone calls with police detectives, to answering her door with a SWAT team gun directed at her face, Joyce had to face the ugly side of our criminal justice system. Watch our video to find out how U.S. & Texas LawShield was able to assist Joyce.

Law-abiding gun owners should never have to fear arrest and prosecution. Unfortunately, in today’s America, even the most upstanding armed citizens can and do find themselves at the mercy of a hostile system. Protect yourself. Become a U.S. LawShield member now.

I Defended My Loved One—My Pet Part 2 – Texas

In Part I, we saw the actions Clint took to defend his dog from being killed by the neighborhood stray. Now, in Part II you will learn if his actions followed the law. Watch Independent Program Attorney Emily Taylor teach you the law, so you will know what to do if you find yourself in a similar situation.

Paul Ready: Welcome back to Part II of our feature on defending your pets. In Part I, our member Clint was forced to defend his dog against an attack by another bigger dog. Many of you have asked what the law says about how and when you can defend your four-legged friends. The answer will be different depending on the law in your state. That’s why we’ve asked the Independent Program Attorneys in your state to tell us more.

Emily Taylor: It’s a terrible situation to see another dog attacking your pet. But what does Texas law have to say about shooting a dog to protect your own. You have a specific statutory authorization under the Health and Safety Code to kill a dog or coyote that is attacking your domestic animals.

Texas Health and Safety Code 822.013 simply requires that the dog is attacking, is about to attack, or has just attacked your domestic animal. This same statute also allows you to kill a dog or coyote that is attacking your livestock animals or fowl.

Keep in mind this statute does not cover attacks on humans by dogs. If a dog is attacking you or another person, you have no statute to rely upon and will have to assert the defense of necessity.

Paul: For more information on when you can use force in your state, please go to GunLawSeminar.com and register to attend one of our events in your area. If you missed Part I of Clint’s story, you can click the link on your screen to see it. And as always if you are not a member we would love for you to join us at uslawshield.com.

I Defended My Loved One, My Pet

Recently, Our Member Clint found himself in a situation where a stray dog tried to eat his dog. What does the law say? Watch our video to find out how Clint handled the situation. 

Sherry Hale: What happens when a vicious animal attacks your pet? What do you do? What does the law say? Our member Clint, recently found himself in this very situation.
Clint: I just got home from work and let the dogs out while I got started on dinner. It felt like only a second had
gone by when I heard one of my dogs yelp loudly. I ran to the door just in time to see a big black dog attacking one of my babies. He was trying to eat my little dog. I didn’t have time to think, so I grabbed my firearm. After I called the police I called the LawShield emergency hotline on the back of my member card. The program attorney advised me what I should say and do with the police during questioning and no charges were filed.
Sherry: Whether you’re defending yourself or your four-legged loved one, you’ve got enough to worry about with the stress of the situation, but don’t worry about your financial or actual freedom. We’re here for you with our 24/7/365 Attorney Answered Emergency Hotline. Stay tuned for part two to hear your Independent Program
Attorney share what the law says in your state, so you will know what to do if you are ever in a situation such as our member was. Oh and no animals were harmed in the making of this video, right Scout? I think he’s just fine.