Attitudes about gun control are changing

By Layron Livingston - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - "This door over here just flew open," said Bob Delk. "He stepped just inside the door, and when he did, I shot him."

Delk said nearly two years ago, one November night, he and his wife were asleep.

"All of a sudden we hear a loud thud," said Delk.

Grabbing his Smith and Wesson 44 magnum, Delk said he made for the den.. That's where he met his intruder.

"I would have never thought in a hundred years that I'd have to shoot somebody," he said.

Delk shot three times. The first shot hit an antique radio and the next two hit the intruder. The man stumbled down the porch stairs, and later died at the hospital. Delk said if he had not had his gun, or the proper training to use it, the situation could have been worse.

"It'll stay loaded, even during this conversation," he said.

According to a CNN poll, in 2001, 54 percent of Americans supported tighter gun control laws. Today, that support is waning, now at 39 percent.

The country is still reeling over recent mass shootings - including East Texas. David Arroyo murdered the mother of his children, and a bystander outside the Smith County courthouse four years ago. He was armed with an assault rifle.

"No one wants to put guns in the hands of criminals, but we also don't want to be restricted in putting them in the hands of law abiding citizens," said Steve Prater, manager at Lock-n-Load.

He said sales are up along with interest in handgun training and concealed licensing classes.

"Hindsight's 20/20 and a lot of people are seeing that if I wait, it'll be too late," explained Prater. "I need to do something about it now, and we're seeing those people everyday."

"Stricter gun laws are not going to solve anything," said Delk. "What you need are lot of stricter people laws."

Delk has no regrets. He hopes to never have to use his gun that way again, but he's grateful he did.

Friday night ABC's 20/20 will take a special look at guns in America. It's called: If I only had a Gun. As the title suggests, it will examine how easy or how hard it is to get a gun, and it will help you decide how you might do if you had to use a gun in self-defense.

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