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Gas Station Owner Has Gun Malfunction After Shooting At Armed Robbery Suspect

MOUNT STERLING, OHIO — A gas station owner is lucky to be alive after police say he successfully won against an armed robber who pointed a rifle at him as he stood at the register. The owner, Raj Patel, carries a handgun on his hip and was prepared for such an occurrence. It didn’t go as well as he probably had hoped, though.

When the man came into the store with a rifle, he pointed it at Patel and announced a robbery. Patel calmly placed the cap back on his drink and then drew his handgun, firing a single shot at the suspect, which sent him running. If Patel needed to fire more shots, however, he wouldn’t have been able to. In the surveillance footage, we can clearly see Patel’s handgun out of battery after the first shot, likely a double feed. He’d have to clear it if he wanted to fire another round, which luckily wasn’t needed.

Handgun seen with slide slightly back after firing the first shot, indicating a malfunction. Screenshot courtesy Madison County Sheriff’s Office.
Screenshot courtesy Madison County Sheriff’s Office.
Likely unaware of the malfunction, we can still see the handgun out of battery, rendering it incapable of firing until the malfunction is cleared. Screenshot courtesy Madison County Sheriff’s Office.

The suspect was later found and captured, and was accused of at least two other robberies in a different county.

Patel got lucky here, and I don’t mean to criticize him, but it’s important to be aware of what our firearm is doing and how to clear a malfunction under stress. Had he needed his firearm after that first shot, it wasn’t going to work.

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