A Bakersfield man is recovering from his injuries and two suspects are in custody after a burglary was apparently interrupted last week. Authorities say the homeowner was pulling into his driveway around 7 p.m. last Thursday evening, but spotted a strange vehicle already parked there.
Moments later, at least two individuals came running out the front door of the home, one of them armed. According to the homeowner, the armed suspect then opened fire.
The victim, a licensed concealed carry permit holder possessing a gun, returned fire.
Police said during the exchange of gunfire, the victim sustained a non-life-threatening injury.
The suspects were able to drive away in the suspect vehicle.
Bakersfield Police Department detectives responded to the scene and assumed the investigation.
Police said 43-year-old Melvin Carter of Palmdale, was identified as one of the suspects after arriving at a hospital with a gunshot injury sustained during the shoot-out with the victim.
Carter is in serious but stable condition.
Police said pursuant to the investigation, 36-year-old Frederick Minnoy III of Bakersfield was taken into custody for his role in the attempted burglary and shooting. Minnoy was transported and booked into the Kern County Jail for attempted murder, conspiracy, and attempted residential burglary.
Authorities haven’t said if there’s any connection between the two intruders and the armed homeowner or whether this was a random encounter, but at this point it doesn’t look like any charges are expected to be filed against the homeowner in relationship to the the shooting.
Unlike many coastal counties, Kern County (home to Bakersfield) has generally been pretty good about issuing concealed carry licenses, even before the Supreme Court invalidated California’s “may issue” concealed carry statute in the Bruen case. In 2020, for instance, Kern County Sheriff Margaret Mims approved more than 4,500 concealed handgun permits; far above the number of permits issued in population-rich locales like Los Angeles County.
Mims policy has been criticized by anti-gun Democrats over the years, but while politicians like Gavin Newsom complain about Californians gaining access to their Second Amendment rights, the sheriff has long recognized that you shouldn’t have to demonstrate “good cause” or a “justifiable need” to bear arms in self-defense. The fact that average Kern County residents can obtain a concealed carry license hasn’t eradicated the gang violence that has plagued Bakersfield for decades, but at least those folks have the chance to fight back if they become the target of violent criminals.
If Newsom and his fellow gun prohibitionists had their way, this armed citizen would have been unarmed and helpless as intruders opened fire while he was sitting in his car. We might have seen a brief news story about the murder of a Bakersfield man who apparently interrupted a home burglary and lost his life as a result, but I doubt there’d be any headlines about the unarmed man who was able to take out two armed attackers or hold them until police arrived.
California’s gun control laws didn’t prevent these intruders from getting ahold of a gun, and if Newsom and his legislative allies in Sacramento get their way it will be even harder for responsible gun owners to protect themselves from the countless criminals who pay little attention to the gun laws already on the books. Once again the anti-gun politicians in the state are getting it backwards; cracking down on those exercising their fundamental right to self-defense while largely ignoring and excusing repeat and violent offenders.