Mall ninjas and Internet commandos will tell you that “bigger is always better” and that “if the caliber doesn’t begin with a 4” it’s useless. I hate to break it to them but even a .22LR can be used successfully for self-defense.
A case in point. Yesterday evening in Magalia, California (Butte County north of Sacremento), John Randolph Shanks III found out the hard way that even one shot from a .22LR can kill you. Mr. Shanks had just forced his way into a Magalia residence along with an accomplice when the homeowner shot him once in the chest with a .22 handgun. When Butte County Sheriff’s Department deputies arrived, they tried to revive him to no avail. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
So was Mr. Shanks just some down on his luck guy looking for food and a warm place to crash? Not really.
According to Butte County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Sgt. Jason Hail,
Shanks was released from state prison in mid-November, but he reportedly failed to report to the Butte County Probation Department as required.
Hail said probation had issued a request that law enforcement be on the look out for Shanks, and were in the process of getting an arrest warrant for the man.
According to Butte County Court records Shanks was sentenced to state prison in April 2010, after being convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm and felony attempting to evade a peace officer. In 2007 he was also convicted for attempting to evade a peace officer. He was sentenced to prison then.
In 2003 he was sent to prison on a charge of “resisting an executive officer.”
The best part of this article is where they say “no charges have been filed against the shooter”.
I don’t recommend a .22LR for self-defense but if it is all you have, then go with it. I’d say the homeowner was lucky and, obviously, Mr. Shanks was not in this case.
Michael Bane has been making the point recently in his podcasts concerning the debate between the 9mm Luger and the larger cartridges that more holes are better even if they are smaller. Moreover, he makes the point that even if it is “only a .22”, no one wants to be shot.
H/T Guns Save Lives