November 19, 2018

Most states recognize that deadly force is necessary when someone is committing a felony. As a general rule, robbery, burglary, and any other felony that would be punishable with the death sentence is justified reason to use deadly force against another human being.


Many states, such as Minnesota, allow you to use deadly force to protect yourself, and other innocents from assault as well.


Last summer, James LaCount shot and killed Thomas Luetzow at a storage facility in Minnetonka, MN. LaCount claimed he shot Luetzow in self-defense. He says a storage facility employees called 9-1-1 as soon as Luetzow started yelling obscenities at him, but before police could arrive, Luetzow pushed him down and began physically assaulting him and a female storage facility employee who had attempted to come between the two while they were arguing.


When Luetzow attacked the employee, LaCount drew his handgun and yelled at him to stop. Luetzow then attacked LaCount forcing him to the ground. LaCount said his gun was pinned between their chests and he “instinctively pulled the trigger. … then he slid the gun on the ground away from him.


Officers handcuffed LaCount, took him to a hospital for an abdominal examination, and had him booked at the jail pending investigation.


Apparently the two men had had arguments previously in September, when Luetzow said his Model T roadster stored at the facility had been bumped by a recreational vehicle that LaCount kept in a neighboring stall. Luetzow wanted LaCount to pay for the damage. A police report from that incident says that Luetzow “was extremely upset and … [said he] would beat up whoever” did it and would even “rip their eyes out,” bragging that he had done that before.


According to court records, Luetzow has a history of assault and disorderly conduct. In separate incidents, he assaulted neighbors in his apartment building after complaining that they were “too loud.


Police Sgt. Troy Denneson wrote in a summary of his report submitted to prosecutors. “Physical evidence and eyewitness recollections appear to confirm LaCount’s explanation of events.”


Police Chief Scott Boerboom also credited LaCount with properly interacting with officers as soon as they arrived on the scene in order to help them properly assess the situation.


“From the onset, when we approached Mr. LaCount, he immediately said it was self-defense and he had a permit to carry,” Boerboom said. “He wanted to make sure, and it helped us initially get an idea about what was going on here.”


LaCount was sitting down and leaning against a vehicle when police arrived. He also made sure to not have his handgun on him, leaving it on the ground for officers to recover.


LaCount said the training he was required to have before receiving his permit to carry dictated his behavior immediately after he shot Luetzow.

He also credited his being able to legally carry a gun in public with sparing him more serious injury, or worse.


Following the strong recommendation of investigators, the Hennepin County attorney’s office released James LaCount stating that he will not be prosecuted for fatally shooting Thomas Luetzow.


It is fairly easy to become qualified to receive a concealed carry permit by taking the National Carry Academy Concealed Carry training program. National Carry Academy is the premier training resource for those that decide to carry a gun as a part of their lifestyle. We offer a combination of online and in-person training classes. In addition to training and firearms safety courses, we also offer our members discounts on high quality firearms and accessories and defense training programs with other national providers like Krav Maga. Contact us at support@nationacarryacademy.com