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May 05 2014

Gun Owner Shoots Armed Robber, Faces Lawsuit

Chicago-CCW-Shooting-Armed-Citizen


19-year-old Dante Williams entered a Waffle House in South Carolina in January of 2012, brandishing a gun and demanding money. Justin Harrison, a concealed weapon permit holder, intervened and shot Williams. Now Williams’ family is speaking out against gun owners and demanding stricter gun control. They’re also filing a lawsuit against Harrison.

The debate was sparked by a surveillance video of the incident being released to the public. The video shows Williams and his accomplice, Jawan Craig enter; Williams has a gun and Jawan has a black bag. Staff and customers immediately drop to the floor, which Harrison says was prompted by the armed men yelling and screaming. While Jawan goes into the back of the restaurant to look for a waitress, Williams robs customers of their belongings. The video also shows Williams walking towards Harrison, which is when he pulls his own weapon and shoots. After the shooting, Harrison is seen trying to subdue Craig, who escaped but was later charged with armed robbery.

A still from the Waffle House surveillance footage.

A still from the Waffle House surveillance footage.

According to Harrison, Williams was also yelling at staff and customers that he was going to kill them.

Williams died on the scene. His family states that he did not need to die, and the fact that he did is due to “poor training” on the part of concealed carry permit holders. Tamika McSwain, Williams’ cousin, argues that if Harrison had been better trained, her cousin would still be alive.

The local sheriff’s deputy who trained Harrison argues otherwise. He says that Harrison acted appropriately and was justified in the shooting. Both the County Sheriff’s Office and Seventh Circuit Solicitor’s office cleared Harrison of the shooting, stating that he acted quickly to defend both his own life and the lives of everyone else in the restaurant. The incident also fell under South Carolina’s Stand Your Ground law. McSwain, however, is threatening Harrison with a lawsuit.

In fact, the family argues that Harrison – as well as the staff and customers – shouldn’t have felt threatened. They state that when Williams appears to be walking towards Harrison in the video, he is actually attempting to leave the restaurant. They claim that there are discrepancies between Harrison’s reports, police reports, and what is seen in the video – namely, that when Williams is walking towards Harrison, his gun is pointed towards the floor. For this reason, they state, Williams should not have been shot.

In South Carolina, concealed carry permit holders are required to apply for a license, take an eight-hour course, pass a written exam, complete a live-fire qualification, and pass a background check. However, Governor Nikki Haley is pushing to eliminate CCW permits altogether with a Constitutional Carry bill. McSwain and her family are instead demanding stricter permit guidelines and more extensive training.

2 comments

  1. Kip Wallace

    Great Site. Cheers for Posting showing us.

  2. Shannon

    Dont you think the trainning should have been done by the dumb ahole’s mama? Maybe he wouldnt be crapping in his own backyard at the wafflehouse!! I would be too humiliated to come forward and blame someone for shooting my family member! What a disgrace the guy was in his final moments! But money calls! No waffles? Oh hell no! We “fin” to sue the po-lice yall!!

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