A Milwaukee concealed carrier shot a would-be robber in the butt outside a gas station in Milwaukee last week, and now faces charges for his actions.
FOX 6 reports that the 21-year-old suspect attacked the 33-year-old man—later identified as Thomas Chojnacki—from behind he was leaving on a bicycle on Thursday evening. Surveillance footage shows the suspect run up and take Chojnacki down to the ground. Chojnacki later said the suspect was trying to take his gun.
“He was determined to get that gun. I know if he got the gun, he would have killed me without a second thought,” Chojnacki told TMJ4.
A physical struggle ensues, with the suspect eventually running off. Chojnacki chases after him off camera.
After about 15 seconds, Chojnacki returns to his bike. The suspect then comes running towards him, at which point Chojnacki pulls a gun from a holster and aims it at him. The suspect paces around the gas station parking lot while Chojnacki keeps the gun aimed at him.
When the suspect gets closer to Chojnacki’s bike, Chojnacki hits him in the back of the head with his gun, which prompts the suspect to pick something up off the ground and start running. That’s when Chojnacki opens fire and shoots the suspect in the butt.
“I don’t understand why he wouldn’t stop, and then when he grabbed my wallet the only thing I could think of was my family and what would happen if he found out where I lived,” said Chojnacki.
See the full surveillance video above.
Concealed Carrier Charged
Police arrived and took the suspect to a hospital. He is expected to recover from his injury. Chojnacki, meanwhile, was interviewed by police in the aftermath of the shooting. It has been confirmed that he is a valid concealed carry permit holder.
“I didn’t have no time to think. he just kept coming and my adrenaline was pumping,” Chojnacki later said.
After reviewing the surveillance footage and the available evidence at the scene, police arrested and charged Chojnacki with reckless endangerment. Milwaukee police say criminal charges are also pending for the suspect.
Chojnacki’s wife, Crystal, told FOX 6 that her husband is a responsible concealed carrier.
“He’s never been foolish about it,” she said, adding that she believes her husband acted in self defense.
“The guy really tried to get his gun from him. If he would, I wholeheartedly believe he would’ve shot and killed him,” she said.