Magazine article The New American

Robbery Foiled. (Exercising the Right)

Magazine article The New American

Robbery Foiled. (Exercising the Right)

Article excerpt

Harold McKinney of Northside, Ohio, is one of more than 500 citizens involved in Cincinnati's Citizens on Patrol Program. COPP members, armed with police radios and cell phones, assist police by walking the streets of 21 neighborhoods, reporting suspicious situations. As the COPP motto ("See it, hear it, report it") implies, they do not carry weapons or intervene in crimesin-progress while on duty.

On the evening of May 8th, however, McKinney, 54, was off-duty when he stopped briefly at Junker's Tavern in Northside to, according to the Cincinnati Post, "talk to customers about joining the organization." As a private citizen, he was carrying a concealed handgun. Ohio does not have a conceal-carry law, but allows persons to carry firearms if they have reasonable cause to believe that their lives are endangered.

Shortly after 11 p.m., two armed men wearing hoods entered the tavern. According to witnesses, one pointed a gun at a 68-year-old female bartender and shouted, "This is a robbery. Nobody move."

One of the thugs grabbed $16 in cash on the bar as the other ran behind the bar to raid the cash register.

It was then that McKinney pulled his .40-caliber semiautomatic pistol and shot one of the robbers in the head. The wounded robber was later identified as 18-yearold Joseph Person. The second man, DeMeico Hester, also 18, fled. A SWAT team found him hiding next door in the heating shaft of a coin laundry.

McKinney, the other patrons, and the bartender were not injured. According to Post staff reporter Kevin Osborne, some of those involved "said they thought McKinney might have saved them from injury or death. …

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