Is California Ripe for a Wrongful Death Suit?

bart-shootingThere’s a saying that I live by in nearly every situation of my life.  “There are no victims. Only volunteers.” While I am sincerely saddened by the death of a 22 year old male due to the blatant error of a law enforcement office for BART, I am also concerned for all of the passengers on the train who were fearful of their lives as a group of young men fought in their midst.  Given the dearth of true concealed carry rights in California, the majority of these passengers were left to their own abilities of self-defense (against a group of angry men) and without much of an equalizer in such an environment. 

As I read of the wrongful death lawsuit that the family is bringing against the officer who mistakenly shot the 22 year old man while he was resisting arrest, the thought occurred to me: How many citizens of California have been unnecessarily killed during the act of a violent crime because they do not have access to a concealed carry privilege?

For those of you who aren’t aware, California claims to have a concealed carry permit, however, it’s virtually impossible for a lay citizen to obtain.  However, if you’re a public official or law enforcement, you’ll likely get a green light.  But for the everyday Mr. and Mrs. Jones who foot the bills for such privileged persons, the privilege to conceal carry is denied.  California’s Concealed Carry Permit is arbitrary and backed by such ridiculous constraints and “fine print” that no other state in the U.S. will recognize it, as CA does not recognize the permit of any other state. 

Knowing what I know about the positive effect concealed carry permits can have in preventing crime and ultimately deaths, I’m curious how much longer the families and friends of the fallen victims over the years are going to tolerate not being granted access to defending themselves appropriately.  Are there grounds against the State of California for a wrongful death suit for deaths that have occurred as a result of the legislative apathy and ignorance of the State officials?  Perhaps this would be a stretch legally, although I’ve seen more unrealistic causes make their way through our court systems.  I’m no attorney, bart-oakland-protestbut when I read about the subsequent riots in Oakland as a result of this shooting, (however grossly wrong it may be) my thoughts of alarm are for those who are forced to subject themselves to the violence of lawless masses without any appropriate defense reinforced.  Violence and rage has no master except death in most cases.  And clearly this large group of protestors were wreaking mayhem, terror, and the ultimate in disrespect as business and personal property was destroyed, all because an officer made a serious error when attempting to deal with a person who was resisting arrest.  Keep in mind that the shooting victim had already proven himself to be obtuse to the law as he and his group continued to fight even in the presence of fully recognizable law enforcement. While this did not justify his shooting, clearly, the fact of the matter is, he would have never been in such a situation to be accidentally shot had he been respectful of persons around him, the law, and himself.

The shooting incident was unfortunate and may very well merit a $25 million wrongful death law suit. However, the needless deaths of everyday citizens in California that could have been avoided with basic training and a concealed carry permit are grosser acts of negligence in my opinion.  The citizens of California and America as a whole have got a lot of work to do to protect their own freedoms.  One voice can do very little when not backed by a multi-million dollar advertising budget.  And besides, freedoms are better kept and appreciated by those who are forced to work for them. 

women-of-calber-logo1Castle Defense and Women of Caliber travel regularly to California to give its residents the privilege of a Utah Concealed Firearm Permit. While this permit will do Californians little good within their own state, it will be the most significant step they can take in claiming some of their freedom as the permit is recognized in 28 other states that better value a person’s right to defend themselves.  The Utah CFP is ideal for travel, out of state emergencies, and also takes a step to show California’s officials what’s important to its citizens.

woc-kristen-3In addition to the Utah CFP, these two highly respected training entities have also demonstrated their willingness to ensure sound safety and use practices by including a bonus 2 hour course, Introduction to Handgun Self-Defense, immediately after the UT CFP course.  While this bonus course offered by Castle Defense and Women of Caliber is regularly sold for $300, their instructors are willing to offer it to California residents – in addition to the CFP training! – at no additional cost, in efforts to eliminate any excuse that may impede the citizens of California in competently defending themselves.  

For upcoming UT Concealed Firearm Permit Courses, women can go to and experience being taught exclusively by women in a classroom of women.  Other Utah CFP courses are available through


Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.  



2 Responses

  1. Kellene,

    I take it that you do ot live in California? But even if you are only familiar with my state from visits, you are probably aware that the majority of voters, and even larger proportion of politicians are very anti-gun. In my opinion it would be more likely that the CCW law would be scrapped entirely in the event of your hypothetical lawsuit than a shall-issue program put in it’s place.

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