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Woman Changes Gun-Control
Stance After Robbery
3 August 2000

A Jacksonville, Fla., woman who hated guns
has changed her position after being shot
during a robbery, the Associated Press
reported July 23.

Two robbers broke through the front door of
the rural home of Susan and Mike Gonzalez.
They sprayed the home with 42 bullets.

Susan Gonzalez, 41, who was shot in the
chest, used her husband's .22-caliber pistol,
and shot to death one of the robbers. The
other was captured and sentenced to a life
prison term.

"I hated guns, all of them," Mrs. Gonzalez
said. "I was that scared of them that I didn't
want them around." She said she would
argue with her husband not to keep guns in
their home.

The robbery, however, changed her outlook
about guns. Today Mrs. Gonzalez rarely goes
anywhere without her holstered Taurus .38
Special. She became a vocal opponent of
gun control and has joined advocacy groups,
including Women Against Gun Control and
the Second Amendment Sisters.

"Gonzalez's story is naturally compelling
because she was anti-gun and because she
successfully defended herself against an
armed intruder after being shot herself," said
Janalee Tobias, founder and president of
Women Against Gun Control. "She actually
fired a gun. In most cases where potential
victims protect themselves, a person is able
to scare off an intruder simply by displaying a

Nancy Hwa, a spokeswoman for the Center
to Prevent Handgun Violence, pointed out that
incidences like the Gonzalez's are very rare.
"Every incident is different," she said. "In this
particular case, she certainly was justified
using whatever means necessary to defend

Hwa said statistics found that firearms are
less likely to be used in self-defense than in
suicides, accidental shootings or homicides
involving members of the same household.

"People have to weigh the risk of losing a TV,
jewelry or whatever vs. losing their life," Hwa

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