A death at my local indoor range.


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Exposure
July 23, 2005, 06:08 PM
Went to go to the local indoor rifle range today only to find out it was temporarily closed. Reason being, someone rented a gun yesterday and shot themselves with it. :( It is being listed as an accidental death right now. I don't know much of the story other than what a gentleman in the parking lot told me.

What really stinks though is that I was meeting two friends there and one of them had never shot a high powered rifle before. He has been itching to get his hands on my M1 and I was so looking forward to him banging away with it. He doesn't get the chance to get out of his house a whole lot so it was a major disappointment.

We ended up going to local indoor pistol range where we put a fair amount of rounds through my WWII P38 and my friends Ruger .45 It was fun but the news of someone dying where I shoot on occasion put kind of a black cloud over the rest of the afternoon.

Anyway, just wanted to share this with fellow shooters.

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Heysoos
July 23, 2005, 06:32 PM
I'm sorry to hear about the guy...it's never good news when it comes to that.

:(

On a related note...I don't know the actual figures on how much this happens, but I could see things like this leading to NICS checks and/or waiting periods before even renting handguns.

Cesiumsponge
July 23, 2005, 06:39 PM
I think there are a few other threads over time that had the same thing happen at a range near them. Last year there was a suicide at an indoor range up north of here. It's an unfortunate event but hopefully things will get back to normal.

bakert
July 23, 2005, 06:41 PM
The very same thing happened back some years ago at the indoor range I shoot at now. The publicity wasn't as bad as it probably would be now. I think the guy was some knd of LEO but not sure. Sad thing but it still gives the antis something more to work with against gun owners.

Cowgunner
July 23, 2005, 06:47 PM
That happend twice at my local indoor range. Thankfully they are still up and running.

Matt G
July 23, 2005, 07:00 PM
We've had a couple of threads discussing the occasional death, often intentionally self-inflicted, at rental ranges.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=97739&page=3&pp=25&highlight=suicide+rent

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=70621&highlight=suicide+rent (QuarterBoreGunner's personal eyewitness account)

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=38672&highlight=suicide+rent

PaulBk
July 23, 2005, 07:04 PM
My local indoor range had a bathroom suicide using a rental about two years ago. They have since stopped renting to anyone who didn't bring either a friend or a gun :confused:

-PB

Rusher
July 23, 2005, 07:11 PM
Which range??? Shooters Express.......Fire power????


Rusher

ccw007
July 23, 2005, 07:20 PM
Man I am sorry to hear about this. I am sure the local news here will say something about this.

Exposure
July 23, 2005, 07:22 PM
Hey Rusher-

It was Shooter's.

Keep in mind this is only the account I got from a guy in the parking lot. But the folks at Firepower confirmed there had been a death there. I wish I knew more of the details.

Shoot safe.

Rusher
July 23, 2005, 07:32 PM
WOW....I just a little bit on the news about it.....1st I feel for the mans family..... 2 weeks ago I found my little brother (32yo) in his room and had beed deceased for about 12 hrs so I feel their pain......2nd I hope this doesnt close them down as the are the only game in town near me





Rusher

steveno
July 23, 2005, 09:15 PM
a nics check wouldn't have prevented this. the Firing Line in Denver had this happen twice over a short period of time. they stopped renting guns. this has been a number of years ago so they might be renting again but I don't know about that

Dave Dembinski
July 23, 2005, 09:40 PM
That's awful, Exposure. :( When I saw the title of this thread, I was really hoping it wasn't a rental suicide. I just don't think there's any way to prevent this. Even with a range officer at every stall, someone could shoot themselves much faster than anyone could react.

Standing Wolf
July 23, 2005, 10:18 PM
...I could see things like this leading to NICS checks and/or waiting periods before even renting handguns.

I believe that's been implemented in one or two places already. Yet another example of the few ruining things for the vast majority.

Exposure
July 23, 2005, 10:39 PM
I believe that's been implemented in one or two places already. Yet another example of the few ruining things for the vast majority.


Well forget about the handgun portion of that argument, this is where it gets even scarier.

This guy supposedly rented an AK47 and was on the rifle range at the time of his demise. Will rifle rentals be outlawed, or subject to waiting periods next? I certainly hope not.

I was the first at the range and had to break the bad news to my friends when they showed up.

One of them commented, "Can't these type of people kill themselves with a spoon? Or maybe jump in front of a semi?" As morbid as it sounds he has a good point. Sad that the few must ruin it for the masses.

I have been feeling weird about this all afternoon. All three of us work together and had been amped up all week for today, we had talked almost nonstop about this trip to the range. The non-shooter we were bringing was super excited. But even more sad was the fact that my shooter friend and I had planned to rent the full auto MP5 and buy 200 rounds of ammo for our other friend to blaze away with. I know this is a selfish rant but the whole situation just really sucks. I really hope the range doesn't shut down over this.

Taurus 66
July 23, 2005, 10:42 PM
This same story appeared last year, shortly after I joined THR. It's an identical story.

Justin
July 23, 2005, 11:14 PM
You know, if I ran an indoor shooting range, I'd be tempted to have an advert behind the counter for a "suicide special."

If you plan to commit suicide, we'll rent the lane to you at a reduced price, and only charge you the cost of one bullet, as well as a reduced price on the rental of a particular gun, too.

Of course, anyone who rented the gun wouldn't be told that the firing pin had been removed.

"I tried to kill myself with this gun, but it didn't work."

"Huh. That's never happened before. Must be a miracle. The big guy upstairs must not think it's your time yet."

:D

Standing Wolf
July 23, 2005, 11:41 PM
Hello, Justin!

Nifty plan!

Rob1035
July 24, 2005, 12:07 AM
right down i85 from me :(

Andrew Rothman
July 24, 2005, 12:15 AM
Bill's in Minneapolis requires a carry permit, a purchase permit or a buddy. If it covers their legal exposure, I can hardly fault them.

english kanigit
July 24, 2005, 02:54 AM
Justin, you forgot to include the 'cleaning fee'. :evil:

Justin
July 24, 2005, 02:56 AM
Hmm. Perhaps the "cleaning fee" could be tacked on, and then refunded after the incident doesn't happen.

c_yeager
July 24, 2005, 03:12 AM
This isnt nearly as rare as it should be. It has happened at least once at most (if not all) of the ranges in this area. I don't know what has been done about it, i *think* some of the ranges are adopting a policy of only renting to persons in groups of two, or those who brought their own guns. I dont know for sure though as I always bring at least one of my own, and the guys at the counter usually remember me.

psyopspec
July 24, 2005, 04:43 AM
I think there are a few other threads over time that had the same thing happen at a range near them.

+1

Exposure, I don't think you're selfish for thinking the way you do. Suicide is an extremely selfish act, and the responsibility of the act falls solely on the person who carried it out. Certainly a tragedy, but at the same time, too bad they had to take down a piece of the BOR with them.

tcdrennen
July 24, 2005, 11:41 AM
My usual indoor range had this happen about a year ago;

Their policy was not to rent to anyone unless they had a friend with them, brought a firearm of their own, or were a member of the range.

A 20-something Asian wmoan came in one Sunday about noon and asked to rent a pistol; they advised her of the rule and she apparently left. People later recalled seeing her hanging around the parking area acting oddly (talking to herself, gesturing wildly, etc. but apparently her general appearance (well-kempt, had a car, etc.) didin't prompt anyone to either call 911 or mention it to the range personnel - after all, these days she was peopbably just talking to soemone on a cell phone with ear bud.

The range closes at 6PM on Sundays, no rentals after 5PM, and the staff starts closing up procedures around 4PM. The same woman came in at 4PM, and the guy on the register had not been present when she had been in earlier; those who had did not see her at the counter.

This time whe filled out the forms and paid cash ($225) for a new range membership, then took a rental 9mm pistol and a box of rounds into the range. She had a lane next to a guy shooting a .45ACP and he noticed she seemed unfamiliar with her gun, so courteously gave her some instruction and assistance; she even fired a few rounds from his pistol. All very friendly and reasonable.

The guy inj the next lane turned to the bench behind him to start putting his gear away; when he turned back, he found she'd leaned over the shooting bench on her lane, put the muzzle of the 9mm in her mouth and fired.

I won't go into detail, but the cleanup took longer than the police investigation.

Turned out the woman's parents and family were opposed to her wish to marry someone they considered inappropriate, and were coming back into town that evening after a trip; the argument/confontation was about to escalate.

The range's new addendum to its rental policy is that new members are subject to the same restrictions as nonmembers for two weeks after they join.

Every range I know of has had at least one such suicide, which is why the rental restrictions are pretty universal. I believe several locally are adding the new member 2 week waiting period as well.

FWIW.

Tara

larry starling
July 24, 2005, 12:57 PM
Wow! My best friend and I go there during lunch and I'm sorry to hear somthing like this happened.... :eek: The owners are really nice people.... :(

thebigc
July 24, 2005, 01:34 PM
that happend at a gun store with a range in the basement the instructor was doing a 1 on 1 pistol class looked away for a second to do something and bam turns out the kid had tried to get a fid before but his parents blocked it when the cops called to say he could come get it saying he was suiciadal so he applied for a class so he could shoot himself during the live fire part.

Exposure
July 25, 2005, 07:36 PM
UPDATE:

A gentleman was in our shop today and he supposedly had a slightly different take on what happened. Supposedly the man shot himself in his car before the range opened. :confused: Later that morning an employee came to work and found the guy dead in his car.

If this is the case why would the range itself be closed and yet the gunshop be open???

Again this is only hearsay and 2nd hand accounts I am dealing with. I still have not seen any press coverage on the incident which leads me to believe the police are still investigating.

Anyway another SKS showed up on the UPS truck today along with 800 more rounds of Garand ammo. I also ordered another case of 7.62X39. I hope the range opens back up soon! :(

Moonclip
July 26, 2005, 04:29 AM
Unfortunately this is a not unknown occurance at ranges that rent guns and most every range now it seems does not allow gun rentals unless there is two people or more desiring to do so or if you have your own gun already. Happens about once every year or two at some range in my area.

I unfortunately had to be involved with one such incident, was not as bad as I thought it would be legally and all, but I felt bad for the patrons who witnessed it and range was only closed for like 3 hours because of it.

Unsafe too, bullet could have hit bystander if not for protective barrier between lanes and fact bullet lost velocity. I heard a rumor one range in my area had a very bad problem with it and actually had a roll out kit for such a thing, mops, kitty litter ect. Very selfish as mentioned, if you want to kill yourself, why make others suffer with you that have nothing to do with your problems?

I think that was BS though as the cops were adamant we were not to clean the mess and the city sent a hazmat crew to clean it and they did not even get around to billing for it. I'll spare you all the morbid details but it did not cause as bad a mess as one would think, probably depends on caliber of weapon though and bullet placement.

One more example of handguns not having muchpower,guy in my case did not die right away even after high caliber handgun shot to head. If a handgun fails to immediately stop someone with a headshot who wants to die, how is your handgun going to perform on a young, drunk or high assailant who wants YOU to die?

psyopspec
July 26, 2005, 04:33 AM
With the understanding that this is indeed a morbid topic,

One more example of handguns not having muchpower,guy in my case did not die right away even after high caliber handgun shot to head. If a handgun fails to immediately stop someone with a headshot who wants to die, how is your handgun going to perform on a young, drunk or high assailant who wants YOU to die?

what caliber was the pistol in question?

Moonclip
July 26, 2005, 04:39 AM
40 S&W out of full size service pistol. Contact gunshot through temple. FMJ ball. Would rather not go in much more detail, sorry. Doesn't bother me much but I figure mods won't appreciate it and for other reasons too.

Werewolf
July 26, 2005, 11:51 AM
Deleted by Werewolf... (sometimes I let my morbid sense of humor get the better of me)

MAUSER88
July 26, 2005, 12:24 PM
That's some bad news. If this happens multiple times at the same place, do you think they would get shut down at some time? Can they be sued?

utahminirevolver
July 26, 2005, 01:02 PM
People jump off the platform in front of a swiftly approaching subway train fairly often, but it seems to be left out of the news and ticket buyers don't get checked for desponancy.

When I was in Basic Training, word spread in our barracks that some guy had shot and killed himself in a foxhole at the range. But only the looniest leftists would suggest taking guns away from our soldiers to try to prevent suicides.

If some editor tries to justify anti-2A measures based on suicides by firearm, we need to remind folks that even adding up all the accidental and self-inflicted deaths resulting from gunshots, these statistically fall far short of the deaths caused by deliberate criminal actions against unarmed innocents and far, far, far short of those caused by totalitarian governments who implement genocide after strict gun control has disarmed the populace.

Just my $.02 worth.

Jayman
July 26, 2005, 05:57 PM
Unfortunately any range that has gun rentals will see this issue sooner or later. It has happened around here at least twice that I know of. Seems to be an either/or proposition. Either you don't rent guns and don't have the problem, or you do and you do.

Uncle Alvah
July 26, 2005, 06:14 PM
The rental gun is just a convenient method. There was a case a couple years ago, around Scrantom Pa maybe, where a customer at a gunshop asked to see some particular gun, a handgun, IIRC. Had a couple cartridges in his pocket. Clerk handed him the gun, action open, and the guy promptly dusted himself. You can drop a cartridge into a chamber and hit the slide release pretty quickly. Even with a revolver, if you're carefull when you close the cylinder.

Colt46
July 26, 2005, 08:38 PM
I think it's something like 6 suicides in 15 years. The range now has a policy of not allowing solo access. If you want to shoot you have to have a partner with you.

Uncle Alvah
July 27, 2005, 12:55 PM
I'm not familiar with any indoor ranges, and their policies, other than the one I use in Raleigh.
There, anyone who wants to use the range must get a range pass, good for one year. You need to watch a video and also take, and pass, a basic knowledge test. Probably takes about an hour or so to "get 'er done".
It may not be much, but it goes a long way in keeping the "impulsive renters" at bay, whatever their motivation might be.
Kinda funny to watch a couple folks blow in, walk up to the counter and announce they'd like to "rent a couple gats". They are shown the door, promptly.

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