Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Baton Rouge Murder-Suicide

Reagan Rowe, the Step-daughter Local news reports

Police said a man and his stepdaughter are dead after what they have determined was a murder-suicide.

The Baton Rouge Police Department identified the victims as David Robinson, 57, and his stepdaughter, Reagan Rowe, 26.

Detectives said Robinson was arguing with his wife about them getting a divorce.

They said when he tried to use the computer he realized Rowe had changed the password, so he couldn't unlock it.

Investigators reported Robinson then grabbed a gun, shot Rowe and turned the gun on himself. They were both pronounced dead at the scene.
What's your opinion? Does it sound like another lawful gun owner gone bad? It seems so to me. This is an aspect of gun ownership that many people aren't aware of or don't want to admit. Among the huge group called "lawful gun owners" there are many who are not fit to own guns responsibly. These are the ones we read about in the news every day. There's a continual flow from the group called "good guys" to the group called "bad guys." And immediately after, the rest of the "good guys" disown the miscreant. He has nothing to do with them.

The solution: better screening for mental health issues, stricter requirements concerning past violent offenses, and eliminating the option of buying guns privately with no background check.

These are some of the ways we can improve the quality of gun owners and cut down on incidents like this one.

There's another aspect of these stories which often goes overlooked.  Nine out of ten are men shooting women and then killing themselves. Guns are very bad news for women.

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.


  1. No deals. Is that simple enough for you? Until you demonstrate that you believe in the right to own and carry guns, we'll make no deals with you.

    1. I do believe in the right of responsible people to own and carry guns. I want them to be screened better.

    2. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you want screening. We don't trust your screens--get it?

  2. Mike, unfortunately you are absolutely correct. David met the legal criteria for a concealed carry permit but most who knew him questioned his suitability for gun ownership. He would get angry very quickly and had a strict and intolerant interpretation of how people should live. We jokingly referred to him as the "Sheriff" as he liked to walk around his home and yard with a 9.5" barrel Ruger Red Hawk .44 magnum on his hip.

    Most who knew David understood it was best to handle him cautiously. If one refers to recent comments by neighbors it is apparent that many considered him a ticking time bomb. I suppose it would be fair to say at this point that David's health was failing him, he was having difficulty getting on disability and his marriage was falling apart. From talking with David it was apparent that his grip on reality was starting to slip blaming his step daughters for his marital woes and embracing all kinds of conspiracy theories fueled by hours of watching Fox News.

    I had voiced concern for the safety of his family (and my wife)and many of his neighbors were concerned for their own safety as well. Was he giving off signals? Hell yeah!, but who do you call and when do you call them? What do they do when "they" are called and what did David need to do to cross the line so to speak?

    I am a gun owner, I used to go to the range and shoot with David and enjoyed it immensely and I see both sides of this issue. I see a need for and at the same time fear abuse of a screening system. I understand that a concealed carry permit needs to renewed periodically but who makes that determination and how the heck would that person know when there is slippage?

    That aside, I am heartbroken that a young woman who has been at our side for practically every holiday event for the past 20 years was shot down for her trivial participation in a conflict in which she sided with her mother. Executed in an indescribably cruel fashion in front of her mother and seven year old daughter because her stepfather was losing it and there was no mechanism in place to address the situation. I don't know. I really don't know but I do know the collateral damage is immense when it is so personal.

    As an interesting side note the police are useless in this type of circumstance, they had been called minutes before, by the shooter himself.

    1. Thanks so much Rob, and I'm very sorry for you loss in this tragedy.

      I know it's a bugger to figure out, but we need better screening, you said it yourself. Once enough gun owners like yourself agree with us, maybe some improvements in the system can be made.

    2. Wow. I am so sorry to hear about this. I just found out about this; Regen was a childhood friend of my daughters. She was always sweet and in no way shoud have been subjected to this unsafe situation. She was always kind and sweet.

    3. I can't understand why bad choices of parents can have far reaching effects on the children.

    4. Sorry you knew her, Bluzgirl. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. MikeB let's review the numbers briefly again. There are at most about 2,000 murders annually where a person with no previous criminal record murders someone with a firearm.* (Let's assume the perpetrator in this story is one of them.) And remember there are about 80 million adults who legally own firearms in the U.S.

    How much tax money would we spend on psych. screening for those 80 million legal firearms owners trying to prevent 2,000 annual murders? An even more important question: could that tax money save many more lives if we spent it somewhere else?

    And yet there is a much more effective solution. The answer to prevent most of these events are simple: women with abusive husbands/boyfriends in their lives should move across the country immediately. Most of them would survive if they left. I know it isn't fair. Neither is losing your job or learning that you have an expensive disease and limited or no health insurance. These events sometimes happen and we have to deal with them as effectively as possible.

    * There were less than 10,000 murders in 2010 where the criminal used a firearm as the murder weapon. And we know from various sources that gangs and drug dealers are responsible for about 80% of violent crime. So criminals in those categories are responsible for about 8,000 of the 10,000 murders. Of the remaining 2,000 annual murders, two categories of criminals are responsible. (1) repeat offenders not participating with gangs or drugs, and (2) people with no previous criminal record. I don't know what the breakdown is in those two categories. We know that people with no previous criminal record would not be responsible for all 2,000 murders but we will assume that anyway as a worst case number.

    1. Capn, you can number it to death, but something still needs to be done. You can massage those percentages to make your point, like that 80% of murders being gang and drug related, but the fact remains, there are too many preventable incidents happening.

    2. You are overlooking what Captain Crunch said about the cost. I am not just talking about money- I am talking about human energy. We don’t have tens of thousands of psychologists sitting around twiddling their thumbs looking for someone to help. If you devote the kind of screening time necessary for gun purchases, it is going to take away from energy that is currently devoted to known patients (who actually need help)- and/or create a huge logjam of people waiting to be screened. Aside from that- what is a psychologist really going to be able to tell from a simple sit down with a prospective gun buyer if they are not currently having an episode, or the visit was triggered by a known episode? I am not a practicing psychologist, but I do know they are not mind readers, and you WAY overvalue the power of cold-screening where the doctor has nothing to go on.

    3. Exactly, TS. Mikeb has unrealistic expectations of what gun control could accomplish. Given the number of guns and gun owners in this country, the complexity of sorting out mental states of people, the number of false positives that psychological tests would generate, the bias of many psychologists against guns categorically, and so on and so forth, his proposals would be a huge mess.

      Mikeb, you have no conception of how to use data to draw conclusions about social policy. If violent crime were on the increase, and gun ownership could be shown to be responsible, you might have a point. But gun ownership and gun laws don't correlate to violence, and the rate of all violent crimes is going down and has been for the last two decades. Your solutions are unnecessarily radical for a diminishing problem.