State Fair Bans Guns; State Fair Workers Robbed at Gun Point


Dean WeingartenWashington State Fair is one of the few locations in the State that bans the legal carry of firearms.  That policy is directly stated in the rules for the fair.

From TheFair:

The following items will not be allowed at the Washington State Fair:

  • Weapons of any kind, including knives and all firearms

The effect of creating a weapons free zone was not lost on a group of criminals.  They used the fact that fair workers were known to be disarmed to their advantage.  Three different armed robberies of State Fair workers were committed in less than 20 minutes, on the 15th of September, Sunday night, shortly after the Fair closed.

From KOMO News:

But Strom had just finished a 10-hour shift selling items at the fair and had been paid $100 in cash.

“But then he pulled out a gun and he asked me for it all, and so I gave him $100 and just walked away before he asked me for my phone or anything,” Strom said.

Strom said the robber was only 5’8″ tall. Strom stand 6’6″ tall. Strom said the man’s gun made up for the size difference.

“I guess you feel pretty big when you have a gun,” he said.

Just 8 minutes later and a mile away on the complete other side of the fair grounds, two more pairs of State Fair workers were robbed at gunpoint. Police believe they were targeted by the same group of robbers.

Police presence at and around the fair has been increased in response to the armed robberies committed by four young black men in a white Buick or Oldsmobile.

Disarmed people who get paid in cash are very attractive targets for armed robbers.

The reporter at Q13 Fox wrote that the victims did the right thing:

In each case the victims did the right thing and handed over their belongings.

I agree with him.  Outnumbered two or four to one, disarmed while the robbers are armed, it is the better part of valor to hand over a hundred dollars.

In  this case, the robbers did not injure or kill their victims.   They could easily have done so.  No one can be certain that compliance will result in a lack of injury, but in this instance, it worked.

According to the research done by Gary Kleck, armed resistance with a gun is less likely to result in injury to the victim than compliance, but unarmed resistance is more likely to result in the victim being injured.  In Point Blank: Guns and Violence in America, the standard reference for criminological study on gun control, Table 4.4, resistance with a gun resulted in 17.4 percent injured.  No self protection (compliance) resulted in 24.7 percent being injured.  Physical resistance without a weapon resulted in 50.8 percent being injured.

That seems simple common sense, from a millennia of experience of people using weapons.  Weapons make people more effective at violence.  Violence is sometimes necessary to defend oneself or others.

Anyone who pulls a gun on you and demands your valuables has to be considered a deadly threat.

Being disarmed puts you at a disadvantage that is hard to overcome.


About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch

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