2023 at Armed Citizens’ Network

The Year in Review

Click for VideoAs we close out the year, the Network is proud to be serving 21,500+ members. Despite steady growth in numbers of members, the emergency phone line was fairly quiet at the Network during 2023. We paid an attorney to attend a hearing about possible reckless endangerment charges against a member, had another attorney oversee the legal aftermath of a fatality shooting after a man holding a gun threatened a member in a parking lot, and hired a law firm to defend a member who is facing aggravated assault charges after ejecting threatening visitors from her home. Then, in the final days of the year, we paid an attorney to meet with a member at the jail after he was shot at and returned fire, killing his assailant. Police told the member they did not expect he would be charged.

The low number of incidents is good news for members, first because it means only four members had to face violent attackers, then deal with the possibility of arrest, and concerns about prosecution. With less work needed to defend members against criminal charges or civil litigation, we focused on member education and preparation, as well as building our own organizational strength, infrastructure, and preparation so when an attack against a member does come, all systems are idling along smoothly, ready to quickly gear up for “go.”

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President’s Message

Marty Hayes

by Marty Hayes, J.D.

Merry Christmas, happy Hannukah and Happy New year to all our members. I am writing this on Christmas day, so the greeting seems especially appropriate. 

We continue our “deliberate growth” plan adding new members each month and year. We find it just as fulfilling to see people renew, because it means we are meeting our members’ needs and expectations. It is especially fulfilling to see the low numbers of member incidents again this year. More on this in our year in review article. 

YouTube Wars

Do you watch YouTube? For the past several months, I have been following the “self-defense insurance” wars, in which one company, Attorneys on Retainer (AOR), has been taking on other companies which rely upon an insurance company to supply the money to pay for legal coverage.

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Attorney Question of the Month

ico gavel 200Lawyers and law firm staff are generous, caring assets to their communities. The variety of causes and charities supported and the time contributed is amazing!

For our first Attorney Question of the Month column of 2024, we chose to deviate from our educational focus and put a well-deserved spotlight on the men and women who so generously serve as Network Affiliated Attorneys by asking them to tell us about their involvement in causes like their local or state pro-gun organization, Christmas food and toy drives, free plain-talk law lectures taught at the local gun club, volunteer coaching at youth sports events, stepping up to help the people at their house of worship, and all the other ways they help make the lives of people in their community better! Their responses follow.

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News From Our Affilliates

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In this edition, we’d like to introduce members to Wes Lagomarsino, a Sacramento-area firearms instructor whom we met 11 years ago in large part because we shared a mentor, Network Advisory Board member Massad Ayoob. Wes has been telling armed citizens in Northern California about the Network ever since. Recently we enjoyed chatting about his classes. For those who prefer streaming video, there’s a lengthier version of our visit at https://youtu.be/sGbfuV5Oxxc or enjoy this shorter written conversation with him. We started our visit with Wes by asking a little about his background and what led him to where he is today.

Lagomarsino: It probably began when I was a victim of a violent crime. My grandfather and I were held hostage in a robbery at our store.

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Book Review

Winning a Gunfight:

Securing victory ethically, mentally, and tactically in a gunfights

By Tim Rupp
Published by The Strong Blue Line (Oct. 11, 2016)
ISBN 979-8478372286
$13 paperback; $4.99 eBook at Amazon

Reviewed by Gila Hayes

Men and women of faith who are also armed citizens struggle with erroneous messages abhorring violence coming from their fellow parishioners and sometimes from the pulpit. Failure to distinguish between violence used to stop evil and violence used in perpetuation of evil has long troubled law enforcement professionals, those in our armed forces, and citizens who are armed for defense of themselves and their families. Retired San Antonio police officer Tim Rupp has made dispelling that error and ministering to the needs of those who go armed for defense of the innocent his mission.

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Editor’s Notebook

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Strangers at the Door

by Gila Hayes

Advance preparation for strangers coming to our homes has been on my mind lately after researching news reports about contract delivery drivers. Some are professional, uniformed, hired, trained, and vetted by national delivery businesses; others, not so much! Some of these workers are sent to private residences in unmarked cars, trying to contact the homeowner to deliver orders. If a signature is required, closer proximity than is safe or comfortable becomes necessary. We find ourselves interacting with delivery drivers who may or may not wear a company vest or even cap, although logo clothing is too easily misappropriated by burglars or those who might be scoping out a home invasion, so logo wear is not good reason to trust a stranger knocking on your door.

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About this Journal


The eJournal of the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network, Inc. is published monthly on the Network’s website at http://armedcitizensnetwork.org/our-journal. Content is copyrighted by the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network, Inc.

Do not mistake information presented in this online publication for legal advice; it is not. The Network strives to assure that information published in this journal is both accurate and useful. Reader, it is your responsibility to consult your own attorney to receive professional assurance that this information and your interpretation or understanding of it is accurate, complete and appropriate with respect to your particular situation.

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