Arizona -(Ammoland.com)- A kind-hearted Deputy was rewarded with a potentially deadly attack in Dawson County, Georgia on December fifth, about 2:40 P.M.
Sargent Randy Harkness has been with the Dawson County Sheriff's office for more than 23 years. He gave a courtesy ride to Justin Alan Foster to the local Chevron station.
He was in the process of providing some personal charity to Foster in the form of a small cash gift, when Foster attacked him.
“He then began to give the gentleman some money just to help him out and the suspect began to physically assault him,” said Sheriff Johnson.
The sheriff said an unidentified woman in her late 20s in a car at the Chevron witnessed the assault, got out of her car, gun in hand, and fired at suspect Justin Foster while he was attacking Harkness. Eyewitnesses in the gas station saw it unfold.
“She shot off, a round. The guy got off the police officer and she shot another round and he was running that way I think, there was three shots,” said Aseem Kahn, owner of the station.
Sheriff Johnson says he believes the armed woman saved Sgt. Harkness' life.
Dawson County District Attorney’s Office is involved in the investigation. The sheriff says the Good Samaritan will not face charges.
“I truly believe she’s a hero I believe she thankfully saved this officer’s life,” said Sheriff Johnson.
The suspect, wounded by the armed woman, then ran off and assaulted others, including an elderly woman. Two more good Samaritans subdued the attacker.
Foster then fled across the road to the McDonald’s parking lot where he assaulted an elderly woman.
Additional “good Samaritans” at the McDonald’s detained Foster until officers arrived, Johnson said.
Johnson said earlier this week that a female bystander who shot Foster as he was assaulting Harkness likely saved the officer's life, as well as other potential victims.
“I truly believe through her actions he's here today,” Johnson said Tuesday.
Officials have not released the identity of the bystander. It is not likely she will face any charges.
There have been a number of cases where good Samaritans who are legally armed have saved police lives. There have been several in the last couple of years. In addition to the event in Georgia, in 2017 an Arizona armed citizen saved a State Trooper who was wounded and under assault.
There has been an accelerating number of police saves by armed citizens as more and more citizens are carrying defensive firearms on a daily basis.
Dozens of instances of armed citizens saving police officers before 1996 are recounted in the nraila.org article published in 1999.
The many police lives saved by legally armed citizens are a major contributor to the positive attitude that police have about legally armed people.
An armed people and local police are natural allies. When locally controlled police and a population who trust them work together, crime rates plummet to very low levels.
When police are not trusted, the crime rate soars.
2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
About Dean Weingarten:
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.