The Armed Citizen® | Kansas City

posted on August 10, 2016

While Kansas City belongs to two states—Kansas and Missouri—both have a strong tradition of supporting the right of armed self-defense. Following are 11 stories of Kansas City, Mo., residents who exercised that right in the protection of themselves and others.

A woman in her 60s was at home in Kansas City, Mo., when she heard a knock at her door. She opened it to find a 24-year-old man who, after asking for someone who didn’t live at the residence, forced his way inside the home and began sexually assaulting her. During a pause in the attack, the woman was able to retrieve a revolver. As the criminal was making his way toward her again, she fired a shot, killing the invader and ending the attack. Police later reported that the home invader had been released from prison in 2012 after serving a sentence for burglary and robbery convictions. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 11/14/2013) 

“Was that you?" Les Daniel asked his 10-year-old grandson who was sleeping in another bedroom. When the boy answered “No,” that was all Daniel needed to hear. Police say he quickly armed himself with two handguns and went to investigate the sounds he'd heard. Fish tank lights in the unlit dining room shone against a hooded stranger. When Daniel asked who was there, the man replied, "KCP," apparently meaning Kansas City police. After Daniel detected two more prowlers, he called out, "Whatever you think I got, you're wrong! There ain't anything in here! You're about ready to die over eight dollars!" He then let them know he meant it by racking the slide on his .357-cal. Glock, prompting all three men to quickly flee. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 3/12/2008) 

A 66-year-old contract carrier for a Kansas City newspaper still doesn't know what his attackers wanted, but he does know that he's lucky to have been armed. His shift was just beginning at about 3 a.m. when four assailants sprinted toward him, forcing him back to the safety of his van. But before the carrier could get away, the biggest attacker, along with his three accomplices, began pummeling the man through the driver-side window. During the ordeal, the van drifted forward and slammed into a store, at which point the carrier retrieved a .38-cal. handgun and fired three shots out his window, causing the attackers to flee. Authorities were unsure if any of the thugs were wounded. The carrier was left bruised and bleeding, but he considered himself fortunate to be alive. "I thought these guys just weren't going to let up," he said. "He intended to knock me out, maybe leave me for dead. At that time, he'd get whatever he wanted." (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 8/2/2005) 

Two masked men, both armed with guns, burst into Robert's Super Market in Kansas City, Mo., about 7:45 p.m. and attempted to rob the store. One robber jumped over the counter, and a clerk shot him. The second masked man struggled with another store clerk until he was shot by the armed clerk as well. One robber died at the scene. The other managed to flee the store, but he later turned up at a local hospital, where he died of his wounds. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 12/24/2002) 

A Kansas City, Mo., burglar's career was cut short when he was confronted by an armed citizen. A Jackson County, Mo., homeowner heard noises coming from his basement one Wednesday morning. He pulled a .38-cal. revolver from under his bed and went to see what was causing the noise. He discovered an intruder in his kitchen and asked him what he was doing there. The man raised his hands, and the homeowner, thinking the intruder had a gun in his left hand, shot him. The would-be burglar staggered to the door and collapsed. The homeowner then saw another man outside his house get into a blue car and drive off. Police later found the car and the burglar's accomplice. Records show the two planned to rob the home and stayed in contact via walkie-talkies. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 4/5/2002) 

While a lookout lay in wait outside a Kansas City, Mo., residence, his two accomplices set about robbing the homeowner inside. After apparently succeeding, the two exited the home and set about making their escape. Much to his dismay, however, the "outside" man soon noticed the homeowner was armed and had taken up the pursuit. An exchange of gunfire between the homeowner and the three armed crooks sent the two invaders fleeing into the night, while the lookout staggered to a nearby house with wounds that later proved fatal. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 12/24/1998) 

The money from the cash register was not enough for three Kansas City teens robbing a convenience store, so the one wielding a pistol demanded a male customer's wallet. After the customer complied, the bandit shot him in the chest anyway, then turned the gun on the female store clerk. He pulled the trigger, but the gun misfired. Unbeknownst to the bandit, his first victim had been saved when the bullet struck a daily planner held in his jacket pocket. That man then pulled his own pistol and shot the armed assailant, who turned and fled. The customer held the other two teens until police could arrive. The wounded robber was found later and arrested. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 12/31/1994) 

A Kansas City man had more than ring-around-the-collar on his mind when he entered a coin laundry. Brandishing a revolver, he demanded the clerk's wallet. The employee surrendered it, then grabbed his own gun from beneath the counter. The would-be robber shot six times, missing. The clerk shot once and hit his target. The criminal, who had just been released from prison, fled, but soon turned up at a local hospital. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 5/13/1994) 

Picking the same house to burglarize twice in an hour proved fatal for a thief in Kansas City, Mo. Alerted to the first attempt, the owner of the home, a Kansas City woman, was at the house when she heard the man try again. The woman investigated, found the man, and fired several shots from her pistol, mortally wounding the intruder. Police later identified the intruder as the woman's cousin, a convicted burglar. (The Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo., 8/24/1993)

A "customer" approached the counter of a Kansas City fruit market, leaped over it, and pointed a pistol at owner Tom Counti. As Counti struggled to disarm the robber, his assailant smashed a liquor bottle on his head. Meanwhile, Counti’s wife grabbed a handgun—and after the attacker ignored her warnings to back off, she fired two shots, which proved to be fatal. (The Kansas City Times, Kansas City, Mo., 2/27/1986) 

A man brandishing a shotgun and demanding money was shot twice in the groin by James Ryan, proprietor of a Kansas City liquor store. The would-be robber entered the store and asked Ryan for a bottle of Scotch. As Ryan returned with the bottle, the suspect pulled a sawed-off shotgun and demanded cash. Ryan, who has been held up several times, whipped out a .38-cal. handgun and shot the man twice. Police suspect the gunman was involved in several other recent liquor-store holdups. (The Kansas City Times, Kansas City, Mo., 10/7/1983)


Randy Kozuch
Randy Kozuch

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