By Dean Weingarten
It was not just one good Samaritan that helped the wounded Arizona State Trooper. We now know that there were at least three good Samaritans. The first was the man who was headed to California with his wife when he saw the Trooper, Edward Anderson, with an attacker on top of him, pounding Anderson’s head into the pavement, Trayvon Martin style.
His ability to quickly assess the situation and take action is somewhat remarkable. The event occurred at milepost 89 on I-10, at about 4:30 a.m. There are no street lights in this remote area. That is when the Trooper was shot from ambush.
The Trooper, Anderson, had probably left his headlights and emergency lights on as he put out flares to secure the scene of a rollover accident. There was a full Moon, well above the horizon to the West Northwest. Those lights, and the headlights from the good Samaritan’s car, were all the lighting there was.
That is when the Trooper was shot from ambush. The good Samaritan had to be observant enough to see the attack ongoing, and quick witted enough to stop his car and run back to determine the correct action to take. He then procured his own firearm, ordered the attacker to cease, and when the order was ignored, shot the attacker to stop the attack.
Several people have speculated that the firearm was locked up because the Samaritan was traveling to California, where firearms in cars are required to be locked up and unloaded.
Then he tried to call 911, but he could not get through from this remote location. He flagged down another good Samaritan. That man, Brian Schober, had previous EMT service in Alaska and was on his way to work in Yuma, over a hundred miles away. He saw that the phone did not work, picked up the Troopers radio, and used it to call for help.
While this was happening, a third good Samaritan had stopped, retrieved the first aid kit from the Trooper’s vehicle, and was applying first aid to the wounded. From 12news.com:
Schober noticed another witness on scene trying to call 911, but couldn’t get through so that’s when he decided to use the trooper’s radio.
“I used the officer’s hand radio and called dispatch to request a helicopter for first aid and backup,” he said. “She asked for confirmation… who was shot?”
Schober told the dispatcher the trooper and suspect both sustained gunshot wounds. Schober says the suspect was lying about two feet away from the trooper.
Schober praised the first good Samaritan responder, and said that he overheard him interacting with the first responding officer.
Schober heard the good Samaritan let the officer know where his weapon was. While they waited for medical responders to arrive.
“We tried to comfort him,” he said. “Another witness had gotten a first aid kit out of the officer’s car and started first aid until the medics arrived.”
A TV journalist for 12 News, Charly Edsitty, interviewed a “Law Enforcement Expert” who says that we are likely to see more of this sort of situation, and more cases where armed citizens defend themselves as well. The expert tells her, on the video, that “I don’t know what angle you could look at this and say ‘Oh, that citizen shouldn’t have done it.”
Whether for completeness, or maybe just her journalistic playbook from Baylor University, Charly contacted the Maricopa County Attorney’s office and asked them if they plan to charge the good Samaritan with something. From 12news.com:
“I reached out to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office to see if they plan to move forward with any charges against this citizen, and they said right now it is too soon for them to comment.”
It seems a bit strange that the question would be asked, just after the expert interviewed explained to her why it would not happen.
About Dean Weingarten;
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.