She stood in her nightgown, her back pressed against the front door. Trembling, she looked at him with pleading eyes. “Please,’’ she whimpered. “Oh, please don’t go.’’
JT snapped a clip into his handgun, then slipped the weapon into his shoulder holster.
“You know I have to do this,’’ he said softly, his steely gaze fixed on the cruel darkness outside the picture window. “We have to think of Fluffy. She needs cat litter.’’
“But it’s Mesa,’’ she cried, clinging desperately to his arm. “There could be Mexican gang-bangers out there, jumping fences and stuff. They could have BB guns!’’
“I know,’’ JT said grimly. “But if I back down now, I’m not fit to serve on the Mesa City Council . . .’’
Wednesday, I got a look at the transcript of the 911 call from the March 9 shooting involving Mesa council candidate JT “Rough and” Ready. Some folks are saying this early morning kitty-litter run may have cost Ready the votes he needed to force a runoff with incumbent Kyle Jones for the District 4 council seat.
Well, if Ready’s brush with the BB gun-wielding desperadoes on the mean streets of Mesa did, in fact, cost him a shot at a seat on the council, I am very disappointed in the voters. Because as I read it, Ready’s actions seem entirely plausible.
I mean, put yourself in Ready’s place.
Here you are, minding your own business on a trip to Wal-Mart to get pet supplies. Naturally, you are packin’ heat.
As you are driving along in a borrowed “constituent’s car,” you happen to wind up in an old residential section of town near the Mesa Arizona Temple. Suddenly, out of nowhere you see a group of people who appear to be suspiciously Hispanic.
So you call 911 and tell the dispatch operator that you saw “people coming out of alleys and jumping over fences and stuff.’’
Aghast at this brazenly criminal fence-jumping, you instinctively decide to tail the suspects until you have them cornered in a dead-end street. A man approaches with a gun. (It later turns out to be a BB gun). You bail out of your borrowed car and pull your weapon.
At this point, what happens gets a little hazy. Ready tells the dispatcher he has been shot at and that he has returned fire. He says the group then scattered.
As Ready describes these events to the operator, barking can be heard in the background and a dog approaches Ready. He tells the operator: “I don’t want to have to try to shoot a dog.”
Ready speculates that the men, whom he describes as “Mexican gang-bangers,’’ were trying to steal cars. Later, he suggests they were trying to murder someone.
A minute before a patrol car arrives, Ready tells the operator: “That’s the scariest experience of my life . . . and I almost didn’t carry my gun today, of all days.”
So let’s recap: You are driving around in the darkness when you see suspicious people “jumping over fences and stuff.’’ You call 911, then tail the suspects. A man approaches with a gun. You bail out of your borrowed car and pull your gun. Shots are exchanged. At some point, you consider shooting a dog.
Now, I ask you: Does this not seem like perfectly reasonable behavior?
. . .JT places the handgun on the night stand and slips under the covers .
“Is everything OK?’’ she whispers sleepily.
“Fine. Everything is fine.’’
“Uh . . . Honey?’’
“Where’s the cat litter?’’