I can’t decide how to consider this article’s…

I can’t decide how to consider this article‘s treatment of the action pistol sports and their enthusiasts: (emphasis mine)

Prosecutor: Road rage killing suspect seen in sharpshooter video

. . .

Now prosecutors say that video of Bowman at a [USPSA] pistol shooting competition in Puyallup may become an important piece of evidence in the case. It shows that he is an excellent shot – hitting one target after another in rapid-fire succession.

. . .

“There’s a concern that somebody who could even, if impulsive, could act this way, presents a danger to the community,” says O’Toole.

Police tell KOMO News they found a so-called “gun room” during Friday’s search of Bowman’s home, filled with bullet-making equipment, ammunition and rifles. They also found evidence he owns at least one handgun.

Obviously there is a certain level of media scare-quoting going on here, but most of it is just reprinting the prosecutor’s fear-mongering. The same fear-mongering that the jury in this guy’s case will be exposed to. Whether or not he’s guilty of murder, it’ll be interesting to see what effect this video of a proficient shooter (the raw video claims he won his division at the local match) has on the case.

Within the action pistol subculture, this guy is more or less average. For someone who shoots as well as he does (in the video, I obviously have no idea about in the alleged murder) the idea that he has a “gun room” with handloading equipment is wholly unsurprising. Hell, I basically fit that description, and so do most competitive shooters I know. Being surrounded by it, it’s easy to forget how scary those kinds of things could be to someone outside the subculture. Media hype around ordering thousands of rounds of ammo online, anyone?

There’s nothing quite like your hobby being identified as a “danger to the community” by someone with the power to end your life as you know it.

Gun pedantry follows:

  • The article identifies it as a “sharpshooter video”, but sharpshooter is an IDPA rank, and below his skill level. It should use proper USPSA nomenclature and say “suspect seen in B-class shooter video”. (B-class just a guess based on the video without seeing his hits.)
  • A later article says “No handguns were found [in the suspect’s house], but police did find holsters for a 9mm handgun, which may have been used in the killing.” That is almost certainly police press conference nonsense, since most modern guns can be chambered in a number of common calibers (9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP being the most common) and they’d all fit the same holster. And in the video, he’s shooting a .45 ACP 1911. While 1911s can be chambered in 9mm it is certainly a minority of them, so if it was a 1911 holster they found, the logical leap to it being a “holster for a 9mm handgun” is pretty long.

Hat tip: Triangle Tactical