Your simplistic and uninformed opinion on the Merrill Kimball case to make a point in “Our View: Guns deliver peril as well as protection” (April 21) is misplaced.

As you suggest, no one who has not heard the evidence should second-guess the facts, particularly a news organization that should know better.

You say if Kimball had left his gun at home, this would have been a different story. That’s the only valid conclusion you reached.

But then you go on to wildly speculate: You say the Kimballs might have lost a few thousand dollars’ worth of honey (they did) and that “probably” he might have gotten bruises. Really? On what evidence is this wisdom of hindsight based?

Leon Kelley was 6-foot-4 – 5 inches taller than Kimball – and weighed over 120 pounds more when he confronted the 70-year-old. Kimball’s physician testified that Kimball had a post-surgical impaired knee and arthritis and could not run. All indications were that Kelley was going to kill or seriously injure Kimball.

So how can the jury verdict be explained? It can’t. Certainly not by a newspaper’s wild conjecture. And while I may disagree with the jury, I never criticize them. They were at least in the courtroom.

For the record, I am neither for nor against guns. I do, however, agree with the title of your editorial: “Guns deliver peril as well as protection.”

The goal of a self-defense trial is not to second-guess a split-second decision to protect oneself from peril.

The legal questions are as follows: 1) Was the conduct, as the law states, a “gross deviation,” under the circumstances, from what a reasonable person would do when in fear of serious injury or death? 2) Could Kimball retreat, as the law also specifically states, with complete safety?

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