UPDATE: Brave liberal trolls gallantly commenting from their anonymous hidey-holes are still making statements that this story is made up. For these special types of google-challenged buffoons, my buddy Victoria Taft has confirmation on her blog:
Although law enforcement wouldn’t divulge Nick Meli’s version of events to The Victoria Taft Show, the Zero got a confirmation.
Authorities confirmed Monday that Meli was seen during the incident, gun drawn, near the entrance to Macy’s inside the mall.
Nick Meli is no hero. Nick Meli is also not a vigilante. Nick just has a simple message for his fellow Oregonians.
Yes, he confronted the shooter at the Clackamas Town Center last week. Yes, it was his engagement with the shooter, with his concealed pistol drawn, that encouraged the shooter to change his plans.
And no, this shouldn’t be remarkable to anybody else.
Over the weekend, we covered the story of a CHL holder who may have been responsible for helping to end the shooting rampage in the mall. It was clear from the brief interview that went out on the broadcast news that we were only seeing a portion of the story.
Nick agreed to an interview. He expressed some frustration with some of the coverage he’s gotten. He’s also a bit shell shocked at the amount of attention he’s getting, and some of the criticism that has been lobbed his way via social media. Some folks have doubted his story. Some folks have said he “didn’t have the stones” to take the shot. He expressed some frustration that 20 minutes of footage with the news reporter was cut down to a 30 second sound bite that didn’t have a prayer of telling the whole story. With all that in mind, and wishing to set the record straight, Nick granted me an interview this past Sunday to talk about the results of his confrontation with the gunman.
Nick had a couple of very clear messages he wanted to send to his fellow citizens:
1. He talks in the interview of his astonishment that shoppers weren’t taking the threat more seriously. He would like more citizens to be engaged and vigilant about their surroundings, and to understand that threats can come from any where at any time.
2. He sees nothing wrong with lawfully using his CHL as it was intended. It is notable that the property owners did not eject him, and the cops on scene recognized him as a citizen doing his duty.
3. He did not go squeezing off rounds willy nilly. In fact, the shooter was made to change his plans simply by the existence of a threat – Nick never fired. Malls tend to be crowded, especially at Christmas time. Nick always kept innocent targets in mind and waited for a better shot.
4. Despite his extensive security training, those who were not there could not understand the terror of the situation. One minute he’s holding his friend’s baby, the next minute he’s making sure they’re under cover and out of the line of fire, and his pistol is drawn. He exhorts his fellow citizens to always remain alert and not too self absorbed to miss an emergency situation as it’s developing.
Here is a compilation of the emergency scanner traffic from that day (which he discusses in the interview):
Here is the full interview: