|Texas prosecutor Mike McLelland|
Those who hold such beliefs might want to consider the experience of Mike McLelland, who was district attorney of Kaufman County, Texas. I say was because McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, were shot and killed on Saturday by an intruder at their home some 20 miles southeast of Dallas. The slayings came less than two months after one of McLelland's chief assistants, Mark Hasse, was killed by one or more gunmen in the courthouse parking lot.
In the wake of Hasse's murder, McLelland made a number of tough public statements, vowing to apprehend the "scum" who were responsible. McLelland even made it clear that he had taken extra precautions to protect himself. The message that McLelland sent, in so many words, was this: "I am heavily armed, and I am a professional who knows how to use weapons."
Did that help keep him alive? Not exactly. Authorities say McLelland was shot multiple times while wearing his pajamas. Here is how The Dallas Morning News described McLelland's mindset after the Hasse murder:
McLelland himself had said he was taking no chances after Hasse was assassinated.How could a heavily armed "soldier," on high alert, wind up being shot to death in his own home? Here are details of the crime scene from The Dallas Morning News:
He said he carried a gun everywhere he went and always took extra care when answering the door of his home.
“I’m ahead of everybody else because, basically, I’m a soldier,” the 23-year Army veteran boasted less than two weeks ago.
Investigators said little publicly about the crime or possible suspects. But a law enforcement official, speaking only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case, called the attacks at the McLellands’ home “brazen.”
The shootings appeared to be premeditated, well-orchestrated and anything but a random burglary that went bad, several law enforcement officials said.
Cynthia McLelland’s body was found near the front door, and it appeared she had answered the door, the officials said. At least two officials said Mike McLelland’s body was found toward the rear of the house. He was dressed in pajamas.
Both were shot more than once, apparently with a large-caliber assault-style rifle. “They found the bodies and a lot of shell casings,” a law enforcement official said.
“It’s a bad deal. This is brazen. It’s revenge. You don’t go in there and do the stuff that’s been done if it’s not revenge motivated.”
Texas is known for its gun-toting, cowboy culture--and McLelland seemed to revel in his tough-guy image. But that did not help much--not when a bad guy with an assault weapon made him, and his home, a target.