Pawn Store Clerk Shoots At Robbers & Misses

Bob Irwin dissects the latest self defense and other shootings of the week. What went wrong, what went right and what we can learn from defense with a gun.

Pawn Store Clerk Shoots At Robbers & Misses
Pawn Store Clerk Shoots At Robbers & Misses
Bob Irwin
Bob Irwin

Las Vegas, NV –-( KKTV-11 reports this week in Colorado Springs (5/24/2016) Police report an incident wherein two men who were looking at guns at a local pawn shop. The men asked the clerk to show them several guns in the display case. While they were handling those pistols, one of the men pulled out a gun of his own and pointed it at the clerk.

The other man then proceeded to put the store’s guns in his backpack. Police said the man pointing the gun at the clerk tried to fire it, but the gun didn’t go off.

After the attempt to shoot the clerk, both men ran out of the store. That’s when the clerk pulled out his own gun and fired one round at the suspects. He apparently missed as no evidence of blood has been discovered, but police are still investigating.


A robber discovers his gun doesn’t work at just the right time. Don’t be him, test everything you carry and do that test with the ammo you carry in it.

As to the clerk, realize that carrying a gun everyday does not make you faster and more accurate! That requires actual practice. When is the last time you actually practiced your self-defense firearm skills? Firing your carry gun as carried, from the draw stroke, in normal street clothes, with your carry ammo, at a silhouette target, at real likely distance (maybe 5 feet)?

Few of us shoot well under stress without constant practice, do it!

Bob Irwin, The Gun Store, Las Vegas

About Bob Irwin

The writer is the owner of The Gun Store in Las Vegas and has a gun talk radio show “Fired Up with Bob Irwin” Firedup is now on KSHP 1400 am radio from 5 to 6 pm on Thursdays and at the same time also on YouTube “Fired Up with Bob Irwin“.

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I Wonder if these thugs completed a BACKGROUND check and had waited the three days or whatever stupidity liberal wrote into the laws BEFORE STEALING these firearms. Now the liberals in New York and Chicago can claim that Colorado is supplying their crooks and thugs with handguns.

Jim Macklin

Shooting in self-defense while the robber is facing you with gun in hand is legally justified. The fact the gun misfired might just mean a single defective round, an empty chamber or a broken gun. You do not have to wait for confirmation. However, when the robber is running away, shooting is no longer legally justified. Missing can save a manslaughter charge. Not hitting an innocent on the street is your luck. Clerks should not put multiple items, be it jewelry, guns or cellphones on the counter to an unknown customer. If the customer seems nervous or asks stupid questions,… Read more »

Gene Ralno

Inexplicably, that’s particularly true in Colorado, a radically anti-firearm state. At home, one’s right to shoot a perceived intruder is limited to “feeling” threatened and must be INSIDE the home, not on the porch and not in the garage. The law is even less forgiving for businesses.

Ford Prefect

Then again, in Texas: if it is night time the presumption is they can run away to hide, regroup, and resume their attack on you – therefore you are justified in chasing them down and using deadly force (if that was justified by the initial attack). Several years ago this is precisely what happened with a convenience store clerk – the deadly weapon he used was a golf club !

Wild Bill

And that, brother Ford, is why we live in Texas.


Not true. Just because someone is running away from you does not mean they still cannot shoot you. There is a great video on YouTube showing a guy running away from an officer. The guy twist his torso and fires at the officer all while still running away from the officer. The officer shoots the guy dead. Had it not been for video the officer would have likely had a long legal battle. Running away, facing away, has nothing to do with it. The question is has the threat stopped. If so you can’t shoot. You shoot to stop the… Read more »

Jim Macklin

Just to keep the answer short and simple, not every possible nuance was listed. Limited to running away, you should not shoot. Retreating while firing or attempted to fire, extends the legal right to self-defense .
Making up your mind to shoot, no matter what the situation and saying so in print on the Internet will come back to haunt you at trial.
District Attorneys and police will investigate and even if the bad guy was trying to shoot at you over their shoulder, you may have destroyed your credibility by making statements about “as far as I’m concerned.”

Wild Bill

I concur Brian, just because the robber turns and or runs does not mean that you are not still in reasonable fear for your life or great bodily injury. The general expression of the law of self defense that forms the bases for the statutory law of self defense for most jurisdictions is that you can use deadly force when you are in reasonable fear for your life or of great bodily injury. Just because the one who threatens you with death of great bodily harm turns, starts to run or runs does not mean that you can not use… Read more »


the perps, at least one of them, were still armed. How does the pawnbroker KNOW the jam/misfire had not been cleared as he exited? He does not. A man, armed and with already proven evil intent, and having demonstrated no qualms about using that gun with which he is armed, remains a lethal threat until he is not.. that is, gone, or gone down. Some states (not sure about this one) grant legal authority to private citizens to use lethal force to stop a felony in progress. Thus, with the backpack still carrying the shop’s guns, a felony IS in… Read more »

Wild Bill

You are right Tion, One is still in reasonable fear under your circumstances. You just have to be able to articulate it. Texas is one state that gives you the presumption on right action when stopping certain serious felonies, which also protects you from civil suit. But it is a rebuttable presumption, so you should try to “Prep the Jury” by shouting drop the gun or Help, Help, call the police, etc” so that you have witnesses on your behalf. You can do your shouting before, during, and after doing your shooting, as well. Here in Texas, you need not… Read more »

Jim Macklin

Once the robbers flead the law in most states does NOT authorize shooting at the robbers. General rule for all store clerks, pawn, jewelry or gun store, on;y one item on the counter for display or handling at a time. This is hard and fast for strangers, new customers. When the robbers gun misfired, the clerk should have drawn and fired an accurate shot at the armed robber before the robber could fire or attempt to fire again. The gun could be def3ective or maybe just one bad round. But if they run away, shooting can be aggravated assault since… Read more »