January 23, 2013 2:21PM

Gun Owner Saves Boy from Pit Bull Attack! Wait … Police Say His Actions Could be ‘Criminal’ ?

Today’s Washington Post reports that a boy in a DC neighborhood was out riding a new bike that he received on Christmas. As he was riding through his neighborhood, he turned a corner and suddenly came upon three unattended pit bulls who proceeded to maul him. Fortunately for this 11‐​year old boy, a neighbor saw what was going on, ran into his house, got his handgun, and then returned and shot one of the pit bulls. A DC police officer, nearby on bicycle, heard the shot, got to the scene, and then shot the other two pit bulls.

The boy, unidentified by the newspaper, is traumatized. His uncle describes his injuries as “horrific” — all three pit bulls had their teeth clenched in the boy’s extremities just before the neighbor and officer shot them. 

Is the unidentified neighbor hailed as a hero? No — just the opposite — he apparently needs a lawyer because he is reportedly under “investigation” for violating our capital city’s firearms laws! You see — he may have discharged his weapon beyond his property line. Talk about no good deed going unpunished. 

Every single day, Americans use guns to save lives but we do not hear about these incidents on the evening news–and that’s mostly because the gun only has to be brandished and the bad guy takes flight. Just not considered “news.” Another reason is media bias–as the past few days illustrate. Yesterday, CNN had full coverage of a gun crime in Houston. This story–civilian uses gun to save an 11‐​year old’s life–only a few paragraphs back in the metro section of the newspaper.

Whether or not the prosecutors file charges here, DC laws need to change–so residents don’t have to hope for good sense to prevail (while paying attorneys fees). House Republicans do have jurisdiction over DC affairs — so here’s an opportunity to send a bill to the president’s desk to get the needed changes in place.

To draw more attention to how often Americans use guns in self‐​defense, Cato published this paper and created this self‐​defense map.